In the communities surrounding Saboba, many houses do not have toilets. Thus the inhabitants of these villages often defecate outside. Due to this bad hygiene, the risk of diseases increases greatly, especially since many people get their drinking water from water holes, since pumps are scarce.
The children living in the communities are among those paying the highest price. For once they have a higher risk of becoming sick, but they also suffer if their parents fall sick and cannot take care of them. Situations like these are particularly likely to lead to the children not going to school so that they can help at home.
The SYC addresses this problem with the tried and tested method of CLTS. The Community Led Total Sanitation, developed by Indian development researcher Kamal Kar, aims to empower the inhabitants of the villages to solve these problems themselves in a sustainable way. To achieve this, volunteers of the SYC head to the communities to raise awareness on the problem. Then, the villagers are shown how to build latrines using local materials which are also used to build other buildings. These latrines can be used by a family for several years.
At the same time, dedicated community members are trained to deal with problems concerning the latrines and to remind their fellow villagers to build new latrines when necessary. Thereby it is guaranteed that the village will remain “open defecation free” even after the SYC volunteers stop visiting regularly.
The CLTS project has already shown considerable successes in the Saboba district. The SYC has implemented the project in 15 communities during 2017 and 2018 and is currently at work in 9 more. We were particularly impressed by the sustainable and long-term success of the project, since villages that the SYC has already left to themselves a long time ago are continuing to build new latrines. Several people told us that the number of people to fall ill has dropped significantly since the latrines have been built.