Friday, August 24, 2012

Toilets!

We have now completed our new block of 6 toilets, thanks in large part to funding from the Rotary Club of Darien, CT.  As a member of the Rotary Club of Kilifi, Kenya, I approached the Rotary Club of Darien (my hometown) when I visited home in November of 2011.  The club was enthusiastic about partnering with a club in Kenya and starting to work on something in this region of the world.  As the Kilifi club was already becoming famous for building toilets, and Vutakaka Junior School desperately needed some more toilets, we decided the Rotary Club of Darien would partner with the Rotary Club of Kilifi and we would build the needed toilets at VJS.

I am happy to say, the toilets came out beautifully!  There are 3 toilets on the girls side, and 3 on the boys side with a urinal running along the boys side as well.  The other two toilets you see in the picture to the right will be used for girls now.  The Ministry of Health in Kenya sets the optimal toilet to student ratio at 1:30.  Before this project, we had only 4 toilets for the 240 students at the primary school and all the teachers.  We can now give the teachers two of their own toilets, and are left with 8 toilets for 240 students (exactly 1:30!)  We are so happy that we have been able to complete this important project.  It has improved sanitation at our school, which reduces the chance of diseases like worms, typhoid, and cholera.  Data from the World Health Organization and Unicef from 2008 reports that only 31% of rural Kenyans are using updated sanitation facilities.  Thanks to the Rotary Club of Darien, VJS is now has adequate (and even beautiful) sanitation facilities and is in-line with the EAC goal of a holistic approach to education and health.


The inside of the girls toilets.  So clean and beautiful! Research shows that giving girls access to proper sanitation at school greatly improves their attendance records.
The EAC and Vutakaka Junior School would not be where they are today without the work of Rotary Clubs all over the world.  Thanks Rotary!






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