Archive for the ‘Livelihoods’ Category

Changing lives in a Sierra Leone community

Changing lives in a Sierra Leone community

Shenge village is a remote community in Barri Chiefdom, southeastern Sierra Leone, home to approximately 300 people. The village is very remote, two kilometres from the nearest dirt road. Much of the surrounding rainforest has been cleared for farming or rubber plantations, but there are still areas like Shenge that are vital forest wildlife habitats. When we first visited Shenge we found a very poor community who had no sanitation or clean water, meaning intestinal illness was very common, and particularly serious for the children. The villagers were reliant on subsistence farming, and children had to walk about 4 miles each way through the forest to the nearest school at Potoru, so younger children missed out on education altogether. [caption id="attachment_8723" align="aligncenter" width="475"] With no well, people had to collect dirty water from streams[/caption]   Thanks to the generous support of a proactive community group we began working with the village in 2011, and Shenge now has a community ecosan toilet, a well, and cassava & groundnut farming livelihood support. More recently, thanks to a generous donation from a regular supporter, we have also built a two-classroom primary school. The school will open its doors to ...

A whole village transformed in rural India

A whole village transformed in rural India

More than 200 people helped with sanitation, clean water and housing in rural India thanks to the staff at Allsop In the summer of 2011, we were introduced to a rural village in south-east India called Sengal Odai. The 39 families (more than 200 people) of this community were living in some of the poorest conditions we had ever come across. One of the worst things we witnessed was the water they had to drink, which resembled a thin mud. Many people we spoke to in the village complained of persistent stomach upsets from drinking the infected water, and this ill health was compounded by the fact that the village contained no toilets whatsoever. The houses people lived in were mostly tiny mud huts with thatched roofs that leaked during the rainy season, there was little work in the area and the nearest school was five kilometres away. Whilst the villagers needed toilets and clean water to drink, they also needed a means of earning a living and, if possible, new homes. Throughout 2012, the staff at Allsop set about raising funds to help the people of Sengal Odai. From skydiving to cycling ...

Sanitation facilities improving school attendance in rural India

Sanitation facilities improving school attendance in rural India

At Wherever the Need we have always made it clear that sanitation should come first, because the only sustainable way to address issues of poverty is to tackle them at the point at which they originate. Whilst education is of critical importance to improving lives and alleviating poverty, effective learning can only take place when students are well enough to attend school and concentrate in lessons. But it is now widely accepted that illness created by inadequate sanitation damages school attendance and education levels. A month ago, we conducted a survey of attendance at girls’ schools in rural India, following the introduction of our new eco-sanitation facilities. The increased attendance figures proved that providing schools with sanitation facilities results in better health and better attendance. On average, there has been an increase of almost 15% in girls’ school attendance since sanitation facilities were available. [caption id="attachment_6209" align="alignright" width="608" caption="Attendance at Vadalur Girls' School has increased by 7% since Wherever the Need installed eco-sanitation facilities."][/caption] A notable example is the Orathur School, in Tamil Nadu. Since we installed new toilets in 2010, we have seen an incredible 30% increase in attendance. This ...

2011 Summer Newsletter

September 05, 2011  |   General news,India,Livelihoods,Newsletters,Sanitation,Water   |

2011 Summer Newsletter

Read our Summer Newsletter for a run-down on our recent work in India. Click the newsletter to enlarge Read the full newsletter here (PDF 1.4mb)

Fiona Bruce narrates our new film

Fiona Bruce narrates our new film

Well known BBC newsreader and presenter Fiona Bruce is the voice-over for our latest film, "Independence, not Dependence". The video gives an introduction to who we are, what we do and why we do it. We believe in creating the conditions to allow people to become empowered and independent in their way out of poverty, not becoming dependent upon foreign aid. Find out more by watching the film below.

One success leads to another in Sierra Leone

One success leads to another in Sierra Leone

Providing sanitation, water and livelihoods to 11,000 people in Sierra Leone. The success of our work in Gbongay has secured us funding for a further 19 villages in the Pejeh Chiefdom, allowing us to help forever change the lives of thousands... In the early part of 2006, we were approached by the village community of Gbongay in south-eastern Sierra Leone asking for help in the provision of water and livelihoods. When we assessed the village we discovered an area ravaged by the eleven year civil war (which ended in 2002), exploited by outsiders and politicians alike, and with a minimal level of infrastructure. From an initial survey and village meetings, we discovered that in a community of 750 people, on average one child under the age of five died every six weeks because of non-existent sanitation and polluted water. Since we introduced new ecosan and wells in Gbongay, not one child has died from intestinal illness. From this success, we have been able to secure funding to expand the project throughout Pejeh Chiefdom. By the time the works are completed ...

Kenya project photos

October 25, 2010  |   Environment,General news,Kenya,Livelihoods,Sanitation,Water   |

Kenya project photos

The first photos for our project in Narok South, Kenya are ready for all to see. This is an exciting project 140 kilometres west of Nairobi in which we are helping the community with ecosan toilets, a large rainwater reservoir, a small livelihood opportunity and a tree nursery. These facilities will work in tandem with the pastoralist nature of the local population. See the photos and project details here: http://wherevertheneed.org.uk/projects/kenya-projects/narok-south/

Ecosan vs pit toilets & MDGs

July 18, 2010  |   Environment,General news,Livelihoods,Sanitation   |

Ecosan vs pit toilets & MDGs

I work on the premise that any individual or organisation that is involved with sanitation is ‘dedicated to the cause’, because we all know how important it is in the fight against illness, premature death and poverty.  The points I make below are not meant to be an attack on others in this sector, but simply an opinion based on whether our piecemeal approach is the most effective, both in construction and finance. The world is still going through a very difficult time financially.  We may be past the worst, but things are still not good.  Levels of aid funding are unlikely to reach the pre-autumn 2008 levels ever again; yet the majority of the third sector is continuing to follow the same processes it did before the financial crash.  The drive for short-term gain is outweighing the need for common sense, sustainable policies. As human beings we easily fall into comfortable bad patterns of behaviour and, once established, these habits take a very long time to change into something positive. In our area of activity we know this to be the case with open defecation (OD) and it often takes a local person with extraordinary motivational skills to guide a community to ...

Six reasons we use ecosan

Six reasons we use ecosan

There is a reason we chose to use ecosan in all our projects. In fact there are six reasons, and we would like to share these with you... A long-term sustainable ecosan system will: ensure water sources are not polluted by open defecation (even if pollution could occur through flooding); provide long-term facilities to eradicate generation-old open defecation practices; lead to better health and hence – reduce child mortality, reduce the need to purchase medication, reduce a country’s healthcare burden, give an individual greater ability to find and keep a job, help children attend school – in the case of post-pubescent girls, in-school sanitation may mean they actually attend school, introduce and maintain better hygiene practices. give the opportunity to provide a second, much needed income; give a high quality fertiliser/compost that can increase crop yields, reduce pesticide and water usage, ease food stress and reduce chemical fertiliser imports; provide donors with evidence that money is being used effectively, sustainably and wisely.