Workshop generating awareness on Sanitation practices

Venue: Hasanpura slums, Jaipur (Rajsthan)

“Cleanliness is next to Godliness”, an age old idiom still holds significant meaning in today’s times. To spread awareness about Sanitation practices among the underprivileged and marginalized sections of the society, residing in urban slum areas, an awareness workshop was organized by SETU Society for Empowerment and Trade Upliftment of artisans for the inhabitants of Hasanpura slums of Jaipur, Rajasthan on 29th august 2013.

The residents of Hasanpura slum were found to be mostly uneducated, migrated & poor population from mixed communities. The locality is quite dirty and the people here were observed to have poor sanitary habits. The awareness level is low and the prevalence of diseases is high. Most of these people have unreliable sources of regular income and are mostly laborers, artisans or are unemployed.

The slums are surrounded by piles of garbage and waste materials. This act as a breeding ground for mosquitoes and flies which in turn causes diseases like malaria, diarrahoea, cholera, typhoid, dengue etc.

Aims and Objectives of the Awareness Programme:

• To create awareness about sanitation practices among the underprivileged sections of the society.
• Making the residents understand the importance of clean surroundings.
• Generating awareness on air and water borne diseases and providing information how these can be prevented.

SETU team conducted the workshop at the slums. The following points were discussed in the session:

• The ill effects of poor sanitation, that becomes the root cause of many diseases like typhoid & cholera.
• Keeping the house & the surroundings clean & healthy.
• If the drinking water appears to be contaminated, is pale yellow in color; use it for drinking purposes only after boiling. Also, chlorine can be added in water for purification.
• Washing hands before & after meals.
• Not to defecate in open as it gives rise to diseases like jaundice, Diarrhea etc.
• Never allow stagnant water to be collected in home and in surroundings, it acts as a breeding ground for mosquitoes.
• To utilize the water generated from household activities for gardening purposes, for growing vegetables.
• Cutting nails regularly & keeping them clean
• Brushing teeth twice a day to keep teeth & gums healthy.
• By eating healthy food a lot of diseases can be prevented. Healthy and Nutritious food doesn’t require costly ingredients ! The myths were cleared in the workshop and women were taught how to make food rich in all the necessary nutrients by using limited resources. The information proved to be useful for the low income families.
• Sprouted pulses like gram, Moong have more nutrition than the cooked pulses, this fact was discussed in detail in the workshop. People were shown how to grow sprouts.( First soak the pulses overnight and then wash them off, put the pulses in wet cotton cloth and after 6-7 hours sprouts will started appearing. Add a little salt, red chilli powder and it becomes healthy as well as tasty!).
• How to purify the water if someone is unable to afford the regular filters available in the market.
• Steps to be take for a person suffering from diarrhea and the importance of ORS.
• The causes and symptoms of diseases generated from contaminated water and dirty surroundings like Cholera, Diarahhoea, and Dengue were discussed at length in the session.

Printed pamphlets containing information of the hygiene practices were distributed among the crowd to make them well aware of healthy habits. Small health & hygiene kit comprising of toothbrushes, toothpastes, nail cutters, soaps, napkins, ORS pouches etc. were distributed to all the attendees who participated in discussion. The feedback to the workshop was great! Participants insisted on having more such awareness workshops in future as the information was quite helpful to them.