According to UNICEF, poor access to water and sanitation facilities and unsafe hygiene practices are the main causes of diarrhea, one of the biggest child killers in the world. Addressing the problems in water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), are crucial to helping children attain optimal health. WASH is regarded as a central component of the millennium development agenda. Progress in this area is closely related to that of child mortality, primary education, and poverty eradication.
WFSS has been providing access to clean water since we began drilling in 2005. This year we were able to expand into hygiene with the establishment of our new hygiene team. Our team members, Matthew and Sara, are local South Sudanese who have received hygiene training. They started traveling with our drilling crew in January to help bring hygiene education to villages which are receiving new wells.
The WFSS hygiene team is working with villagers to: identify good and bad hygiene practices; learn how diarrheal diseases spread and how to block that spread; identify health problems; choose improved hygiene methods; identify the tasks of men and women in the community; and, identify what might go wrong and plan for change.
“It is important for us to be able to help people with safe hygiene practices,” says Salva Dut, Director for East African Operations. “We are glad we can provide this important education for people who need it, especially children.”
Salva and our African team are already looking for ways to expand and improve our hygiene education program for next year, helping to transform even more lives.