Chikanda is a large primary school in rural Lilongwe in Malawi with more than 1,200 students and 4,100 community members. Freshwater Project International, in partnership with Procter & Gamble and H2O for Life, implemented a comprehensive Water, Sanitation and Hygiene program at the school.
Before: The school had NO water point and students had to walk about almost 1KM from the school to access water from a nearby stream, which was contaminated with bacteria and animal feces. Latrines were in extremely poor condition, with no doors for privacy. Many students chose to defecate in the open bush and would have to miss school due to water-borne diseases contracted from drinking unsafe water and utilizing unsafe sanitation facilities.
After: Freshwater Project International drilled a new borehole well utilizing a large drilling rig, which drilled down to the water table. Pipes were installed and a hand pump was added, and now students have access to fresh, clean water close to their classrooms. Two blocks of deep pit latrines (1 for boys and 1 for girls) with 4 compartments each school (16 rooms total) were dug and constructed. All of the latrines have doors that lock, offering students privacy. Additionally, two blocks of urinals (1 for boys and 1 for girls) were also constructed. In the girls’ latrines, a special menstrual hygiene station was included to offer girls a private, hygienic place to wash and manage issues related to menses. Hand washing stations were added near the latrine block as well as close to the classrooms. Students were also provided with a supply of Procter & Gamble Purifier of Water packets as well as training to purify water in their homes.
With the attraction of the new water source and sanitation facilities, the school has seen an increase in enrollment since the implementation of this project with 254 additional students registering (from 1,267 to 1,521 students). Due to the presence of water supply, the school has established a school garden and feeding program for the students.
Quote from Head Teacher, Maxwell Mkondedwa:
“This is a very good thing you have done! This borehole is helping us. It is helping the children…even the community. Before this borehole, we were suffering from dirty water because people were drinking water that was contaminated. But after having this borehole, we have very clean water. Also, the latrines and the toilets…and we appreciate what you have done. The community and the students and we thank you very much that you assisted us. Thank you!“