SODIS. Pilots projects.

 

During a 1996 pilot project in Thailand, where rainwater harvesting is popular, selected water samples in Ban Phu Lek and Ban Nong Rue Kae reported not only improved taste, but also 86.6 per cent drop in sicknesses. A growing number of households are using the technique.

In another pilot project undertaken across five districts in Sri Lanka, as many as 81 per cent continued using the technique as well after the project was over. Only because of the concerted efforts of community development workers it continued to use. In parts of Kenya beset by diarrhea and typhoid, rural women seemed aware of the goodness of sunlight, but needed training to tap it.

In collaboration with other NGOs, LEAD has focused on the Tiruchi, Erode, Perambalur, Karur and Pudukkottai districts along the Cauvery basin. The field work involves project coordinators, who look after staff training and monitor progress; microbiologists, who monitor water quality; supervisors, who oversee field activities and make improvisations; and animators, who promote the technique using flip-charts, posters, pamphlets and even theatre performances and cultural programmes. All activities are supported by local women volunteers.

Over two years, 43,833 families and 99 schools were trained in SODIS and hygiene, and over 1.26 lakh PET bottles sold to users. Notably, 40 per cent of the target group has accepted the technique. “One of the difficulties is that people hardly believe in the presence of bacteria when they cannot see them,” says N. Radha, Executive Director. Yet, thanks to unrelenting effort, SODIS has markedly brought down instances of cough-and-cold, diarrhoea, and stomach disorders.

In Assam’s Cachar district, the Silchar-based Assam University (AU) collaborated with two partner organizations and village institutions to link SODIS promotion with community child improvement programs. Nearly 48.6 per cent became regular users and instances of diarrhea plummeted by 44-71.7 per cent. And this in an area where even the piped water supply often has faecal contaminants due to old, leaking pipelines.

The next big step is the helping the thirsting masses make the most of a simple, cost-effective technique like SODIS.

2005 год 2 части