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Improvement of access to sanitation and raise of awareness of hygiene for residents of the municipality Ngan Diouf, Senegal

Ngan Diouf is one of the largest municipalities in Senegal (26,000 inhabitants). The local population lives mainly from the sale of peanut crops grown during the rainy season. Cultivated areas account for about 60% of the area of the municipality, but due to the lack of drainage systems and total dependence on precipitation, this area is decreasing each year. Although young people clearly dominate in the population structure, there are no vocational education centres in the municipality. The problems of Ngan Diouf include a lack of basic sanitation infrastructure. There are only 3 latrines in the 25 functioning primary schools.

Increasing access to basic sanitation infrastructure is a priority for the municipality. According to WHO data for 2015, the percentage of people with access to basic sanitation infrastructure in Senegalese villages was 33.8%. Dealing with physiological needs in places that are not properly adapted has a very negative impact on the environment and on the health of the population and farm animals. It contributes to the infection of drinking water and increased incidence of parasitic and bacterial diseases (typhoid fever, cholera, diarrheal diseases). The most common victims of "dirty hands" diseases are small children. The challenges related to rural sanitation concern not only the need to create sanitary infrastructure, but also the need to raise the low hygiene culture of inhabitants.

In order to improve the existing situation, it is important that places with a greater intensity of people, such as schools and primary health care centres, be provided with public toilets. No less important is the training aspect oriented towards raising people's awareness of hygiene.

Improvement of access to sanitation and raise of awareness of hygiene for residents of the municipality Ngan Diouf, Senegal

The project will run from April to December 2016 in the municipality of Ngan Diouf. The Navegadores Society was the contractor, and Ngan Diouf and Afrig municipality leaders were partners.

The aim of the project is to improve the environment and the hygiene and health of the people in the region. Activities will be carried out in the largest population centres: latrines will be installed in schools and primary health care centres. In order to limit the problem of unlicensed construction, local workers will receive training in the proper construction of latrines. In addition, a social campaign led by social leaders will contribute to changes in bad hygiene habits. Discussions about hygiene and the need to build individual latrines on farms will take place during home visits, at market places and at various ceremonies. Thanks to talks in schools, the level of knowledge about hygiene among pupils will increase.

The beneficiaries of the project will be primarily the pupils of the 4 schools involved in the project and primary health care centre patients in which toilets will be built. The next group of beneficiaries will comprise local workers participating in workshops on the construction of toilets (about 20 people). In addition, according to the plans, coaches who encourage the construction of individual latrines will reach about 60 people per month. All residents of the municipality will benefit from raising awareness about the importance of proper hygiene and training of workers in the construction of toilets.

The project implemented Priority 6 - protection of the environment established under the "Multiannual Development Cooperation Program 2016-2020".

Improvement of access to sanitation and raise of awareness of hygiene for residents of the municipality Ngan Diouf, Senegal

The project ran from 1 April to 31 December 2016 in 14 locations of the Senegalese borough of Ngan Diouf. The project activities included practical training of local workers in the construction and installation of toilets, the construction of infrastructure, the training of local hygiene trainers and training among adults as well as the hygiene lessons aimed at pupils.

As a result of the project, multi-cabin latrines were built at 9 schools and 5 clinics. In one of the health centres (where a small obstetrics department operates), an internal toilet was built, suitably adapted to the needs of patients. During the construction work, practical training was carried out for local workers enabling them to carry out similar projects in the future. The proper functioning of the toilets is supervised by the Health Committee, which was already functioning within the borough.

In addition, coaches received training on hygiene (Badianou Ngoh). The coaches, who are well respected in the local community, led a social campaign among adults, motivating them to take greater care of hygiene and to build individual latrines.

The last component of the training were hygiene lessons for pupils at schools where latrines were built.