Conclusion of Mtae Health Clinic & Dispensary Water Tank Project – Tanzania
This project has been completed under the direction of Peace Corps Volunteer, Mia Young.
We would like to thank Mia once again for executing such a fine project.
The following is a summary of the conclusion report submitted by Mia:
Water Tank Provides Reliable and Available Water Year-Round in rural Lushoto, Tanzania
The peaceful village of Mtae, Tanzania located in the Usambara mountains is home to the only clinic and dispensary serving 1 village, 2 sub-villages and over 8,000 people in the area. Every day, this clinic sees between 50-100 people not including those coming especially to the clinic for family planning. There are many pregnant women and children who use the clinic. Because the village is extremely rural with the closest town being 3.5 hours away, sanitation is extremely important for a health facility receiving this level of activity.
As noted in the project page, there was the sad and unfortunate issue of water not being available for the clinic and dispensary staff and patients to wash their hands, for staff to properly sanitize medical supplies and for patients to get safe drinking water.
The lack of reliably available water and education concerning safe drinking water and proper hand washing techniques contributed to poor hygiene and sanitation, which in turn led to an increase in the spread of preventable, communicable diseases, such as common colds and diarrheal disorders.
With support from the U.S. Peace Corps and funded by Water Charity, the clinic and dispensary in Mtae was able to purchase a 5,000-liter water tank and have it connected to a gutter system, 3 sinks within the clinic and an outside spigot. The staff at the clinic was extremely pleased to have access to water in order to keep a more sanitized environment and to be able to freely wash their hands after each patient.
The community was very grateful as well to be able to have constant water, the ability to wash their hands, and to avoid spreading germs. The long-term goals being met are to decrease the spread of communicable diseases at the clinic and in the community due to the increase in hand washing, and for the community learn the importance of drinking clean, sterilized water every day for proper hydration.
Due to successful presentations on the subject, both the clinic staff and villagers have learned about the importance of hand washing in the prevention of diseases, and the significance of drinking clean water every day… as well as how to plan and execute a sustainable project together. The very-involved project committee will ensure that the water office will address any maintenance issues and cleaning of the gutters as they arise even after I have left.