Access to water supports an entire community
© UNICEF Mozambique/2012/C.Bach
Drought often strikes Changara district in Tete province, and water is scarce. With the use of an advanced water pump, Changara’s communities can benefit from the water while also staying protected from cholera and other waterborne diseases.
Jonito José Antonio, Director of Education in
Changara district, tells us that the improved
access to water, hygiene education and sanitary
facilities achieved by the Child-Friendly Schools
initiative has had a great impact on the communities.
"It is not enough to just tell children that they
need to take care of their personal hygiene. You
also need to provide them with the possibility
to learn how to do so," Mr. Antonio explains.
"Learning how to wash one's hands and drink
from a clean source is beneficial not only for
children, but for the entire community and the
whole country. Children pass on their knowledge
to their family, and then into the future."
Nhaacamba School in Changara recently
received a new water pump, thanks to the
Child-Friendly Schools initiative. It was originally
intended only for the school, but is now being
used by the entire community. "There is another
pump very far away that we used before, but it is
broken. If we did not have this pump, we would
not have had water at all now," school director Olerio Domingos Agostinho explains.
The water pump next to the school is surrounded
by children, holding little plastic containers and
waiting their turn for a drink. It is very hot outside,
and they are also taking turns to work the pump.
Sometimes older ladies come with large plastic
containers to take home, and the children wait
patiently for them to fill up. Leve Raymundo is 14
years old, and stands washing his hands outside
one of the new latrines. "I used to have diarrhoea
very often," he says. "I could not wash my hands
after going to the toilet, and before the water
pump, I used to drink from a hole in the ground."
The school director confirms: "It is true, it
was too far to walk to the other water pump, so
the children used to drink water from the little
stream next to the school. It is very dirty, and we
had many cases of cholera. Now, the pump and
hand-washing facilities help the entire community
to stay healthy."
Leve lives alone with his mother. His father died
a couple of years ago, and the boy feels responsible
for taking care of his mother. He is proud to
have taught her about the importance of washing
her hands correctly, using water and soap or
ashes. "First I thought, maybe she will be upset
that I tell her what to do; but she listened, and
thanked me for taking care of her. Now we always
wash our hands before dinner."