Sanitation and hygiene promotion begin at school
BAGHDAD [ACTED News] - After decades of war and international sanctions, schools in Erbil, in northern Iraq, have suffered from a long-term lack of investment. Sanitation infrastructure has been the hardest hit, as they are severely lacking from school buildings, and the children are having to study in sometimes worrying hygiene conditions. Overcrowding has worsened the issue, as the 494 schools built in Erbil between 1992 and 2003 have up to 70 pupils per packed classroom. Sanitation infrastructure is therefore insufficient.
Present alongside these populations, ACTED has been supporting the development of Iraqi school buildings, emphasizing the awareness of the children to hygiene and healthy habits. Four thousand children from five schools have therefore benefited from hygiene promotion workshops and the construction and rehabilitation of latrine and drinking water infrastructure adapted to children’s height and practices, namely in Kawr Gosik and Khabat.
Such workshops have been replicated in 30 additional schools in the Erbil governorate, with the cooperation of the Kurdistan regional government. In total, close to 21,500 children will learn the basic body hygiene and water stocking principles. Such activities will be incorporated into the general school curriculum, which will help all children to gain awareness to such topics, and have a strong impact on their health and that of their families every day.
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