SCHOOL-BASED WATER, SANITAITON AND HYGIENE (WASH) INITIATIVE
School-Based Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) initiative
“I really thank this WASH program for teaching us the basic things about how we as girls can handle our menstruation and to understand how our bodies work. I started with my periods last year and I did not really know much about it at that time. It somehow came as a surprise. Because of this program, we also now can be given pads at school in case if menstruation starts and the girl did not have any pads with her.”
14 year old girl, Bagani Combined School, Kavango East region, 2016
With support from UNICEF, the interventions on Water, Hygiene and Sanitation (WASH) was implemented in close collaboration with the Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture and the multi-sectoral support from the Water Sanitation and Hygiene in School (WinS) steering committee. The project was implemented in March 2015 – April 2016 in 100 schools across 7 regions namely, Zambezi, Kavango West, Kavango East, Ohangwena, Omusati, Oshana, and Oshikoto. Although funding for this initiative ceased in 2016, SFH continued to follow up with selected schools to ensure that hygiene conditions and practices and maintained.
The project was designed to address needs identified based on a Needs Assessment on WASH in schools led by SFH and partners in 2013/14 which found that one quarter (25%) of the total number of 420 schools surveyed have water piped into the school buildings. Other findings were summarized as follow:
Why working with school learners on basic hygiene and sanitation is essential:
The overall goal of the project was to promote hygiene and sanitation practices in schools with the objectives to:
The 100 participating schools were drawn from 7 regions as follow: Omusati region (17), Ohangwena region (17), Kavango East (18) and West (15) region, Zambezi region (17), Oshana region (9) and Oshikoto region (7). These are the regions with low performing indicators on sanitation, safe water supply and prone to floods. 47 schools among the 100 schools were previously supported through the MCA-N WinS project.
At school level, community facilitators provide a series of “mini workshops/sessions” to the WASH club members and surrounding communities on the importance of WASH and how to design different activities to attract the attention of other learners.
Schools have established WASH clubs, that consist of at least 25 learners linked to the focal teachers and their primary duty was to promote WASH activities at the school level. This is carried out through WASH information sharing, performance of songs, drama, and holding cleaning campaigns in schools. These activities created awareness and drew larger groups of learners to the WASH club events.
Participants, were trained on the content of the WASH Training Guide for Teachers and how to use it. The purpose of the
Guide is to assist teachers in promoting positive behaviour change of lea
rners through increasing their knowledge,
skills and practices with regards to the WASH themes, namely water, sanitation and hygiene.
Teachers are expected to help learners practice basic hygiene principles and applying them in different situations and settings including menstrual hygiene and personal cleanliness. They also learned how to keep their environment safe, clean and hygienic through managing the different types of waste material properly.
Highlights of Achievements:
SFH programme Officer at a follow up visit at Ondjora
Combine School in the Oshana region. Here she is seen
assessing safe water usage with a learner.]
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