Clean Water = Healthy Communities

The effects of a health work shop in Jafai Koto

Clean Water = Healthy Communities

The eWATERtaps provide clean, safe water. However, we have found that due to the lack of education about the importance of clean water, in most rural villages many families continue to use well water for drinking, washing and cooking.17274803_10155986697418378_1058626106_n 17352945_10155986703263378_1370628318_n

In the Village of Jafai Koto, we organised a health workshop to explain the health benefits of using clean water.

The basic plan for the work shop was to provide local drummers and dancers, including a set of elders who would incorporate a lot of the information we were trying to teach in to song and dance form, making it more assessable for those with limited education. The local health worker was also very passionate about this topic, and was the main presenter in the health work shop.

We had a handful of main points we wanted to get across.

The first was that well water is easily contaminated in many different ways. The wells are mostly open, and so animals and faeces often fall in to them. The local community will often comment on the regularly changing taste of the well water, which shows how open it is to contamination. Wells and hand pumps are also high producers of waste water around the taps, which means there will be still water, which is a breeding ground17274523_10155984336833378_216731445_n for mosquitos, increasing the incidence of malaria. The sitting water also encourages live stock to congregate around the wells and hand pumps. This means there will be large amounts of animal faeces around the taps.

We ensured they understood the implications of this, with the contamination causing a range of different sicknesses, which often affect children and the older generation more heavily than others. Some of the diseases often carried by water are Shigellosis, Cholera, Hepatitis A, Leptospirosis, Typhoid Fever, Malaria and Dengue fever. All of these can be prevented simply by drinking, washing with and cooking with clean water.

Another point we pressed was the money they would save by using eWATER.

In year an individual will spend £2 on all of their water needs, where as if they get sick from drinking well water, and not eWATER, they will be spending upwards of £20 on medicine, treatments, transport and food to restore them to health. Which doesn’t include the amount of money they will have lost from being unable to work.

After a very productive and enjoyable 3 hours of local drumming, dancing and education, we received great feedback. Many of the women at the work shop explained that they simply didn’t know that well water could cause such a range of diseases and infections.

In the following weeks we have seen that the community has really taken the information we gave them on board, as their water usage has risen from 2 litres per person per day, to 9 litres per person today as these graphs show. The health worker at Jafai Koto is especially pleased, as he has seen a distinct reduction in the occurrences of diarrhoea and other water borne illnesses!

This is a great aspect of the eWATERtaps, they can monitor the effect of events such as this on water usage.