October and November 2012 WASH Updates

We celebrated GHD (Global Handwashing Day) 2012 with two large events last year. The first was held on Mahatma Gandhiji’s birthday – a huge event in India.  While Gandhi is synonymous with the independence struggle in India, he also is often quoted on sanitation and hygiene.  We invited high ranking government officials and education leaders to participate in a hand-washing promotion program in Vasole with tippy tap competitions, skits and songs.  The district head who attended was thrilled with our hands on approach and we’ll be working with him to scale up our school program at the district level.

WASH 1
Schoolchildren in Vasole show off their mastery of proper hand-washing techniques to visiting government officials

Our second event was student led; using a cart to pull a portable tippy tap, 80 children from 5 to 12 age group led a rally through the village of Pandewadi, carrying posters and shouting slogans. They invited village elders and made speeches on handwashing and the school’s ‘health ministers’ (elected as part of our SHP to monitor hand hygiene) also pledged to make everyone in their school a handwashing champion!

WASH 2
Students of Pandewadi celebrating Global handwashing day on 15 Oct by organizing rally for promotion of handwashing with soap and demonstrating tippy tap.

In October we had all reinforcement activities;  follow-ups and visits to tippy taps made by students at home was the prime focus. We conducted almost 4 follow ups in every school and following statistics show the progress:-

Activity

Clean Hands

Nail Cut

Dirty Hands

Total students

% of clean hand

Follow up No 1

210

750

803

1762

11.9

Follow up No 2

572

505

604

1648

34.7

Follow up No 3

845

330

550

1725

49.0

Follow up No 4

499

315

228

1042

47.9

In last two months we had 46 schools visits; see table below:-

Activity

No. of Schools visited

Students benefited
Follow up No 1

4

453

Follow up No 2

7

741

Follow up No 3

14

1141

Follow up No 4

14

785

Follow up No 5

6

419

Follow up No 6

1

73

46

3612

 

WASH 3
Students of Pande school practicing ‘dosti’ song while showing their tippy tap built by them at home, also there teachers are observing them. We are getting good participation from teachers.

 

WASH 4
SHP team member Deepak demonstrating tippy tap and hand-washing with soap to the parents of Gulumb school.

 

WASH 5
Parent of a school child at Gulumb donating money in the jar so that the school has soap for handwashing .

We also had our midterm review meeting.  This  exercise allowed us to look back, review our progress and note our challenges. Overall, we’ve stuck to the schedule for the year.  The schedule is a tight one for a team of four but we’re managing well. We found over all that the pace of the program was good. Responses from students were satisfactory and encourages us to work more for clean hands.  Here are some of issues we observed during the hand-washing program that we need to work on:

  • Teacher’s response and participation at the time of follow up,
  • Teachers are not washing their hands,
  • Need a village person (tippy tap representative) for each village to see that the tippy taps were made by students, as there are too many tippytap station for us to visit;
  • Need designated School corner-  space in the school premise for displaying charts, photos, reminder posters, etc.  Some schools are not keeping this space clean and so we are losing on a way to daily remind students about hand-washing,
  • Health ministers and chief health ministers are not performing their responsibilities,
  • Maintenance of tippy tap in the school – several schools have tippy taps that are vandalized by village youths or animals and some schools are not putting out the tippy tap materials on a daily basis.

To work on resolving these issues,  we had a one day workshop for teachers and block education officials on 8th and 15th Dec. 2012, for Wai and Jawali block respectively.  We held a participatory workshop to ensure that teachers take ownership of handwashing activities and help us take the programme forward.

Watch out for this space for more updates on the workshop and our WASH programme at schools.

“Wash your hands with soap to keep those ugly and dirty germs away” !!!

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