Poor sanitation is one of the biggest problems many families face throughout the world, the effects of which are seen especially in both rural and urban Tanzania. Lack of access to adequate sanitation facilities can have a devastating effect on both the health and livelihood of a family. Poor sanitation can lead to illness and disease such as diarrhoea, cholera and increased chance of malaria, which could, in the worst-case scenario, end in death.
As well as this, the impact of poor sanitation on a family's livelihood can be huge. The effects of poor sanitation on the parent(s) in their efforts to provide for their family can be the biggest problem as it also indirectly affects children. With lack of access to a consistent source of income through time spent unwell; a family can be left struggling for food, causing malnourishment and starvation which can lead to more serious illness and disease when combined with the health issues arising from poor sanitation.
Children can be the worst affected as they may face development problems in their formative years due to consistent illness and dehydration. Arguably, one of the most damaging effects can be seen in education. Inevitably, a child will struggle if they are unable to attend school on a regular basis and will suffer with poor performance if attending unwell, not allowing them to fulfill their educational potential. This can damage their prospects of further study and/or better career in later life, ensuring the family remains stuck in the cycle of poverty in the future. Linked to a lack of income, children could also be forced to enter work as their parents are unable to provide, having a greatly disruptive effect on their studies and in most cases causing them to abandon school altogether.
Provide improved sanitation facilities and better quality of living
Raise awareness, understanding and implementation of hygienic behaviour
Through Project Hygienics, The House that Zac Built plans to build two toilets for two families, providing good sanitation facilities to those without the means to improve their sanitary conditions. As well as this, we will provide training in hygiene and cleanliness to raise awareness that adequate sanitation facilities are crucial to health.
Hygienic behaviour is tantamount in the prevention of illness and disease. This information will be shared directly with each of the project's beneficiaries who will be encouraged to communicate their knowledge and information with other members of the local community. Each family will be provided with a single basin outdoor toilet that will replace their current sanitation facilities. While a simple design, it will be of good quality and long lasting, which is crucial to the family as it relieves them of one less pressure to deal with on a daily basis.
These new facilities will reduce the likelihood of illness and disease allowing the parent(s) to focus on gaining a consistent income and providing food and other basic needs for the family. Children will be less at risk of illness and disease allowing them to develop both physically and mentally, particularly through increased access to education, leading to a brighter future. Each family will be trained on the significance of hygienic behaviour and it's relation to adequate sanitation conditions. Soap will be provided to each beneficiary family to help implement personal hygiene. Hand washing with soap can greatly reduce the chances of contracting illnesses such as diarrhoea and will be identified as one of the key preventative measures in disease control.