As Coronavirus sweeps across the world and the World Health Organisation warning of the threats, specifically, to countries like Malawi. It’s become apparent that only 11% of Malawian children wash their hands using soap. This is mainly due to a complete lack of facilities. 1 in 3 people in Malawi (5.6 million people) don't have access to clean water and only 4.2% of schools have hand washing facilities with soap (UNICEF).
We’ve all grown accustomed to the simple mantra from governments worldwide: “You should wash your hands for 20 seconds, using soap and water or hand sanitiser.”
What if the simple truth is that there is no tap, no water, no soap.
Schools across Malawi, the hub of most communities, will struggle to stave off the global pandemic without the most simple equipment to keep their schools safe and prevent spread of the virus.
How will the project work?
Across all of the Classrooms for Malawi partner schools there are currently just under 30,000 children. This project will provide hand washing facilities for each to help slow the spread of the disease and ensure school life returns to normal as soon as possible.
The Hand Washing Stations
The picture below gives an example of the simple hand washing station that will be installed in each classroom. A large bucket (with a tap) will be filled with locally sourced water. This will allow each child to wash their hands with soap (under running water) throughout the day before and after classes.
The project will be co-ordinated by Local Mothers' Groups who play an active, positive role in Malawi schools (particularly through their support of gender equality). Their co-ordination will be vital to the success of the project, ensuring the children are organised, washing hands regularly and operating the tap system to ensure no cross contamination.
How you can help?
Classrooms for Malawi’s mission is to ensure every child in Malawi is taught in a safe classroom fit for purpose. Over the past seven years we have worked with over 29 different school communities the length and breadth of Malawi providing over 112 classrooms and many other structures (dorms, toilets, libraries) impacting the daily school experience of over 16,000 children for the better. The total school roll of all the communities we work with is over 30,000 pupils.
During this urgent time of global crisis, we have set ourselves a simple task. In 30 days, to ensure that every child in all of our partner schools across the country will have access to clean water and soap. This will contribute to slowing down the spread of Coronavirus in Malawi and in turn allow for a better education for the children of Malawi. In the longer term, beyond COVID-19, this programme will address some of the drop-out rates due to avoidable illness spread by poor hygiene.
With your help, we can fund the facilities required to allow almost 30,000 children wash their hands throughout the school day.
We need your help to raise the funds to give almost 30,000 children a basic requirement – clean water and soap to wash their hands at school each day. The overall cost to fund this programme is £7,000 (including washing stations, basins, soap, leaflets for educational purposes and distribution / management costs of the project).
*Please note that Crowdfunder.co.uk are not charging for donations made in our appeal, however an additional and optional fee is automatically added to your pledge. If you wish to remove this fee, simply change this to 0 at check-out.