The children living in Fida’s Nepalese project villages are healthier than before. A private toilet helps to keep the environment clean.
Meena Devi Chaudhury lives in West Nepal. Her family consists of a husband and five children. Despite Meena’s daily hard work, the family lives in extreme poverty. However, some things are about to improve.
Meena has recently attended training with a so-called WASH team. The training taught the importance of clean water, using a toilet and good hygiene.
– Now we understand these issues, Meena comments proudly.
The family is planning to build a new toilet. It will impact the quality of life of the whole family. Even Grandma Karam is excited about the benefits of a new toilet.
– We will remain healthier. Especially the children are feeling much better than before, and that is important for us mums and grannies, explains the grandmother and continues:
– The toilet will help keep the houses and courtyards clean and will save time for other things. The toilets are also easy to use at night, since they are so close. You can be safe there.
Village pride and joy
Fida’s water, sanitation and hygiene project in Nepal has achieved excellent results. Toilets have been built in remote villages, and the results are visible to everyone: children, in particular, are sick much less than before.
Underpinning the success is the commitment of workers, extensive voluntary work and good coordination and collaboration with others within the industry, such as the local government. A so-called WASH team (water, sanitation and hygiene) works in Fida’s Nepalese project villages. It educates the local people about the importance of clean water, hygiene and sanitation. Soon the trained locals will start teaching this to the others in the villages. This way, information taught to a small original group reaches the whole village effectively. Families taught by the WASH team will build toilets according to their resources: some from bamboo, others from clay and some even from bricks.
A toilet is often the pride and joy of the village. Toilets improve the quality of life of families and whole villages. Children will no longer be constantly sick.
It is easier and safer for children to play in clean villages, when faeces cannot be found in the vicinity of their play areas. In addition, the toilets provide biogases, which are used in heating.
Toilets for Everyone in Nepal
It is the target of the Nepalese government that by the end of 2017, each Nepalese family would have access to clean water and a private toilet. At the end of 2012, this target had been reached by 62 per cent of the population. However, the growth has been phenomenal, as in 2010, the rate was only 43 per cent.
The largest obstacle in reaching this goal is the area of Nepalese lowlands, where the rate is below average. In one of the regions where Fida works, the rate of access to toilets is only 28 per cent. This region, called Terai, covers approximately one third of the area of Nepal, but it already houses half of the country’s population. Terai is clearly behind the rest of the Nepal when measured using many social and economic indicators: the status of women is particularly poor; there is a large number of unschooled children; and human trafficking, both within the country and across the borders, is common.