Germany provides financial support for water, sanitation in Lilongwe

Germany has provided €125 000 (approximately K102 500 000) to Habitat for Humanity Malawi (HFHM) for improving access to water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) in low income areas of Mtsiriza and Mtandile in Malawi’s capital, Lilongwe.

Water point committee members

The project aims at improving access to safe water and hygiene through the construction boreholes, water tanks, girl-friendly latrines, rehabilitation of old latrines and hand-washing facilities in selected primary schools of Mtsiriza and Mtandire and two water kiosks in Chitsukwa and Nkhwazi Villages.

The project also aims at tackling menstrual hygiene issues that tend to hinder female learners from concentrating on their education, especially during their menstruation period.

HFHM Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) Coordinator, Ulemu Gondwe, said the two locations were identified because they are characterised by extremely low income, rapid growth, high population density, and an almost complete lack of urban infrastructure.

“There are two government schools in the project area, which have high numbers of learners and are seriously underfinanced; hence, struggling to provide basic WASH services to their learners. The WASH situation in the community is critical, as a result of poor infrastructure and poor sanitation and hygiene practices. These problems lead to frequent instances of water- and vector-borne diseases both among learners and the general community,” Gondwe explained.

Lilongwe District Council Groundwater Development Assistant, Grace Masautso, hailed the project, saying it will address some of the waterborne diseases the two communities usually face, particularly during the rainy season.

Masautso said they have since started training water-point committees on how they can maintain the boreholes on their own without necessarily relying on the donor or the implementer of the project.

“We’re training 20 people from the two communities. These people were selected based on the committees where they are coming from. As you are aware, community members and leaders take a huge role in the running of a public school through the Parents Teacher Association. So, it’s important that we train them on how they can look after the facility themselves because this development belongs to them,” she said

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