Kyzyl Döbö Village Sanitation Project – Kyrgyzstan
Kyzyl Döbö School, Kyzyl Döbö Village, Kochkor Rayon Center Naryn Oblast, Kyrgyzstan
Kyrgyzstan is a mountainous, post-Soviet republic located in Central Asia. Its six million citizens are mostly concentrated in the provinces of Chui and Osh, home to the largest and second largest cities in the country, respectively. The community of Kyzyl Döbö is located in Naryn – the most sparsely populated and least accessible of the country’s provinces. The village school, which serves 750 students from both Kyzyl Döbö and the neighboring village of Mantish is a pillar of the community.
Unfortunately, students attending the school experience a high rate of Hepatitis A and diarrhea1. A survey of approximately 10% of the student body taken in October of 2015 suggests that limited hand washing and the use of outdated latrines are major contributing factors to incidences of these diseases2.
There are currently only five wash sinks located in a washroom inside the school building adjacent to the school canteen for the younger children (forms 1-4) to use for hand washing prior to their lunch break. However, this number of sinks is insufficient for the large group of children (140-150) who need to wash their hands in the time allotted before their scheduled lunch break. The physical layout of the school does not allow access to these wash sinks for students in forms 5-11. Additionally, the school’s only bathroom facilities are 2 outdoor latrines built prior to independence in 1990.
There is a ditch with moving water (part of the town irrigation system) that runs in front of the school. Some classroom teachers provide a bottle of water for hand washing inside their classroom.
In order to address the high rate of Hepatitis A and diarrhea incidence, school officials and community members are seeking to build modern bathroom facilities and increase the number of wash sinks available to students at the Kyzyl Döbö School.
The proposed project consists of three components:
1) Construction of a modern bathroom building and necessary support infrastructure (septic, plumbing, pump, tanks, etc.) with flush toilets, sinks, and 10 private stalls for boys, girls, and school staff. The new bathroom building’s water supply will utilize the existing connection to the municipal network currently servicing the canteen sinks but will have independent tanks and pump. Additionally, a septic tank will be constructed according to the recommendations of the local septic cleaning service. Drinking water fountains will be installed on the outside wall of the building. Community members and staff have met with local experts to draft a building plan, a list of materials and equipment needs for construction, and a plan for sustainable operation and maintenance post-construction to support this portion of the project. In addition to directly addressing the problem of Hepatitis A and diarrhea incidence, the new facility will provide a secure and private place for girls’ personal hygiene needs.
2) Addition of five sinks to the existing school canteen washroom. The existing sinks are supplied by a connection to the municipal water network, a pump (43m H, 1.25L/sec Q), and a tank (500L). This existing scheme will easily support the additional sinks. The addition of these sinks will double those available at the canteen and allow students to properly wash their hands in the time provided.
3) Training of children and families on the importance of good hand washing practices and hands on demonstration of proper hand washing techniques. Children and families will be educated on the importance of proper hand-washing practices and hands on demonstration of proper hand-washing techniques will be provided. At the same time, a group of high school students will be trained to become student-teachers and will assist with the education of their peers. They will be given the necessary lesson plans to continue with the hand-washing education after my PC service is completed3. A school staff member will be designated to assure the continuity of training of new student teachers each year.
Monitoring and Maintenance
Special care has been taken to ensure the long term effectiveness of the proposed project. The School Director, the driver of the project, has guaranteed the availability of funds to support operation and maintenance of the new facilities including the annual cleaning of the septic tank. The school’s maintenance supervisor has ably maintained the existing canteen system for two years and is capable and motivated to ensure the continued functionality of the expanded system. Finally, the inclusion of community members as well as planned trainings is specifically designed to increase the sense of community ownership and respect for the new infrastructure.
This project is a Let Girls Learn project and will provide safe, private facilities for girls to take care of their personal hygiene needs. Let Girls Learn is an initiative developed by Michelle Obama to help girls stay and school and acquire an education. This will help many females to stay in school and increase the health of the students.
1 There were 13 reported cases of Hepatitis A among the children of Kyzyl Döbö School in the year 2015 and 30% of the school population had episodes of diarrhea.
2 Almost 90% of the school children interviewed reported that they either did not wash their hands or they only used cold water from an outside pipe after using the toilet because the school does not have sinks available for hand washing. Almost 100 % of the children in forms 1-4 reported that they did wash their hands before eating, using the current sinks that are adjacent to the canteen. However, observation of these children washing their hands before eating indicated that more than 90% did not use soap or proper hand washing techniques. 57% of the children interviewed did not understand the importance of hand washing.
3 Families will be educated on the importance of proper hand washing during a regularly scheduled parent’s meeting in the spring of 2016.
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