Notes From The Field
Time To Clean Up Some Dirty Business
By Tamsin Ribbons
06 July 2012
The Samlout Hygiene Implementation Team (S.H.I.T) is here! Since 2009, MJP has been working in rural communities to help villagers access latrines and clean water supplies; latrines that can flush waste into a secure concrete pond and the contents released safely after one year to be used or even sold as compost. In Cambodia one in eight children won't live to see their 5th birthday because of diarrheal disease, spread primarily through poor hygiene and sanitation practices.
In 2012, we decided to change our hygiene and sanitation strategy. Despite MJP's original latrine subsidization programme for rural families, we didn't see a great increase in latrine demand, leaving a majority of villagers still practicing open defecation. As a result of poor latrine sales, we stopped our subsidization programme to support a local villager establish a latrine shop-making them locally available and affordable.
We're seeing results! Based on our latest field reports, 25 families have bought latrines in the last 3 months and a rival latrine seller has opened in area. This competition can only increase the availability and affordability of toilets. Our goal is to reduce the number of families in the region without access to a latrine by 25% each year.
Hygiene and Sanitation Poster created by Dr. Andrew Boyd and used as a teaching material (Image Credit: WaterSHED)
Our new, revamped hygiene and sanitation programme also targets school children, teachers, parents, local authorities and health facilities in the community. We've created community based hygiene and sanitation teams to help us reach all village families.
As Stephan Bognar, MJP CEO says "It's time to talk about it, sing about it and take responsibility." We need to:
Drink clean water
STOP Open Defecation!
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