By Rotary Service and Engagement Staff
Clean water and sanitation is a human right, but not everyone is afforded that right. Rotary members are providing communities with sustainable access to safe water, improved sanitation, hygiene management training. When people, especially children, have access to clean water, improved sanitation facilitates, and better hygiene habits, they lead healthier and more successful lives.
During March, Rotary Water and Sanitation Month, we encourage members to work towards Rotary’s goal of providing everyone with safe water, sanitation, and hygiene by 2030. Here are just a few examples of club service projects that are working towards that goal:
- In Nepal, the Rotary Club of Durbarmarg collaborated with their twin club and the Rotaract Clubs of Phulbari and Eco-Himal Nepal, to provide access to safe drinking water for students at a government school. Students were drinking visibly contaminated, untreated water directly from the water source. Rotary members installed 14 low-cost colloidal silver-enhanced ceramic water filters with strong filtration systems. These filters were manufactured locally, and are a traditional practice in availing safe drinking water to those lacking access.
- In the Philippines, the Rotary Club of Lubang Island trained mothers and children living in rural mountain areas on proper handwashing and sanitation methods. The community was getting their water from a local river and not washing their hands regularly. Club members trained the community how to keep their hands clean while conserving water.
- In Nigeria, the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology lacked sufficient toilets on campus, leaving students to rush home to use the toilet. The Rotaract Club of Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH) Ogbomosho decided to renovate an abandoned restroom on campus by adding access to water from the school reservoir, and cleaning up and painting the entire block of three male and three female compartments. The restroom was then handed over to school management for maintenance.
- The Rotary Club Loja Los Zarzas in Ecuador aimed to provide safe water in the province of Loja to improve the living conditions of 50 rural families. Members installed a small pumping system powered by a solar panel, a distribution tank, a basic sanitary unit (shower, hand basin and toilet), a wastewater treatment system, and then implemented an organic family garden irrigated by gray water.
- In India, the village of Kolawade was consuming unsafe water delivered by a rusted 40-year-old water pipeline. The Rotary Clubs of Pune Central and Pune Kothrud came together to provide a new pipeline for the village, allowing 1200 villagers to have access to clean and safe water.
How is your club and district providing access to water and sanitation? Share your thoughts in the comments below! Post your club’s project on Rotary Showcase and join the conversation in My Rotary’s discussion groups. Read more stories about water and sanitation projects to gain inspiration for club and district service projects.