India Yankee 8 – Phase 2 overview

26th August 2013

Each ICS programme is split into 3 phases. Phase 2 looks at raising awareness about health, hygiene and sanitation, such as hand washing and the importance of brushing your teeth. Construction is also included in this phase, implementing the toilets for the beneficiaries around the area, in this case Neralekuppe.

This blog will act as an introduction to what we have done so far in Phase 2, and what we want to achieve upon its completion on Wednesday 14th August.

Hand washing has been a very vital part of this phase, raising awareness of when you should be washing your hands and why this is important. We have so far started 2 hand washing clubs, 1 in Neralekuppe and 1 at the neighbouring village Kalabhoochanhalli. We did this by putting on some skits about the consequences of not washing your hands after using the toilet etc...We managed to use paint, representing germs, to show the children how quickly and easily germs can spread, and we taught the proper techniques of hand washing to all, and got them to mimic this before their lunches.

At Kalabhoochanhalli, we have also been able to start a tooth brush club. Every day at 9:30 am, 2 or 3 volunteers walk to the school to brush their teeth with the children. This seems to be working a treat, and we managed to provide each of the children with their own brushes and paste. We are looking to do the same here in Neralekuppe, merely requiring the brushes and paste (because this school has around 140 children, whilst Kalabhoochanhalli only has 92).

Finally we have also implemented a tippy tap in each of these schools. These are a great and easy to make tool, that allow the children to wash their hands efficiently, whilst using considerably less water. These have been a huge success, and watching the children use them every day is a real testament to how quickly they learn, and what a difference we are making here.

We are constantly searching areas around Neralekuppe for other schools to raise awareness with, and we have already planned to make another 3 tippy taps in Primary and Kindergarten schools.

Our secondary project committee is swinging into action, and there are plenty of opportunities for improvements within the village, especially the school (which is our accommodation), and all of these options are being considered. It is very exciting looking into the school’s needs and their tap and water system is of severe importance.

Language and culture have also been busy, with Tuesdays and Thursdays seeing the start of some English classes at 2 schools within Neralekuppe. The first few lessons have received a great reception, with the entire school staying to participate.

Overall, raising awareness is paramount to what we are trying to achieve here, and once the toilets have been built, which is obviously a very large part of Phase 2, we will be able to raise awareness of toilet usage and its advantages too.