Water, Sanitation and Hygiene in Schools, Kachin State

WASH in Schools

Agostino Munyiri
UNICEF Myanmar/2018/Nyan Zay Htet
10 July 2019

Kachin State Myanmar, July 2019 - The passion and commitment of father of two, Aung Kyaw Tun who manages the Ho Pin AShae Kwet Thit School in Moehnyin Township in Kachin State is appreciated and recognised by the people in his community. In 2017 they voted the local leader onto their Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) committee and the WASH in Schools (WinS) project

“During my time as a headmaster, I’ve observed positive changes in the hygiene behaviours of schoolchildren and people in my community. The increased number and availability of latrines with nearby hand washing facilities in most households is a real improvement. Now, I see near universal hand washing practices. I believe such healthy behaviours have reduced the incidences of illness,” concludes the 45-year-old leader.

AShae Kwet Thit School was recently awarded a two-star award for considering children with disabilities and constructing a ramp for wheelchair access to the latrines. The school is the first of Moehnyin Township’s 41 schools to make such an effort.

“In our community there are two children with disabilities who don’t attend school. With the ramp and once a donation for wheelchairs comes through, that can change,” Aung Kyaw Tun explains.

UNICEF Myanmar/2019/ Sanda Lwin
Latrines designed for children with disabilities at AShae Kwet Thit school in Hopin, Moehnyin, Kachin State.

Between 2014 and 2016, a total of 17,710 children in Waingmaw and Pharkant Townships of Kachin State benefitted from WinS services, which were supported by UNICEF with the cooperation of International NGOs.

To increase community ownership, involvement and cost effectiveness, in 2017 a new strategy localized in the Myanmar context and implemented through the Department of Basic Education was piloted in Hopin Sub Township in Mohnyin Township. 

The new “Than Star” approach, which is adopted from the Global Three-Star Strategy, has so far reached 2,684 school children in 21 schools funding from Australian Aid and Natcom.

Funded by UNICEF Australia and using a “Whole Township” approach, this programme now aims to reach an additional 107 schools in Mohynyin and four schools in Inganyang Township in 2019.