Conclusion of Bougaribaya Village Sanitation Project – Mali

This project has been completed under the direction of Peace Corps Volunteer Dina Carlin. To read about the beginning of the project, CLICK HERE.

The project was to improve the sanitary environment of the village through the elimination of trash and animal waste.

Dina reports:

This project was initiated and organized by the Bougaribaya Primary and Secondary schools in response to the poor sanitary conditions of the village. The project focused on providing a safe and sanitary village environment, teaching the school children the importance of reducing trash and open defecation practices in order to decrease the incidence of diseases such as malaria and dysentery.

The project was organized by the School Director Musakan Keita along with the Peace Corps volunteer. 50 rakes, 10 shovels, and 3 wheelbarrows were purchased and delivered to the community, and the first cleaning campaign began. The campaign was scheduled weekly, on Wednesday afternoons, when the children have no afternoon sessions.

The school teachers instructed the children in the importance of creating a safe, clean environment to reduce water-borne illnesses such as dysentery, as well as to decrease the impact of trash piles on diseases carried by flies and mosquitoes.

The children were each given different tasks and worked together to clean up a different neighborhood of the village each week. The cleanup also focused on maintaining sanitary areas near water sources (wells, pumps and taps), as well as collecting the trash and burning it in areas away from homes and regular activity.

Five cleanup sessions took place within the community. Over 80 children from the 4th-8th grade (primary and secondary cycle students), along with their teachers, were involved in the village cleanup campaign.

Each neighborhood of the village has been cleaned of trash and feces, and in doing so the entire community has been sensitized to the importance of maintaining a clean environment to reduce diseases and improve living conditions.

The community has indicated an extremely positive response to the cleanup sessions, and other community members have begun to adapt similar sanitation techniques. The cleanup campaigns will continue throughout the rest of the school semester, utilizing the equipment purchased through this project, and the school has indicated a desire to continue it every school year.