Volunteer in Water, Sanitation and Hygiene ( WASH) Project in Uganda
- Volunteer Opportunity posted by Justice Tourism Foundation
Times of day
Full time (30+ hrs/wk)
Short-Term (few weeks/months)
WASH is the collective term for Water, Sanitation and Hygiene. Due to their interdependent nature, these three core issues are grouped together to represent a growing sector. While each a separate field of work, each is dependent on the presence of the other. For example, without toilets, water sources become contaminated; without clean water, basic hygiene practices are not possible.
In Uganda many people have no access to basic water and sanitation facilities. Access to safe water supplies throughout Uganda is 65% and access to improved sanitation is 48%. Although the number of people with access to safe water and sanitation has improved over the past 10 years, there are still many communities (both rural and urban) that rely on contaminated water sources such as streams and open wells. More than half of all residents in Uganda do not have access to improved sanitation, sharing overcrowded pit latrines or practicing open defecation.
Our water, sanitation, and hygiene efforts are part of a full plan that addresses the many factors that perpetuate poverty. Water is foundational, but we don’t stop there. Our long-term, comprehensive model investing in rural communities also works to ensure sustainable improvements in health, education, economic development and food and agriculture production.
The overall goal of our water and sanitation projects is to ensure that rural communities have access to sustainable safe water sources and to improve the health and socioeconomic well-being of communities by reducing the incidence of water- and sanitation-related diseases through the provision of sustainable safe water, sanitation, and hygiene practices. Projects achieve this goal through four objectives:
- Increase access to sustainable, safe water and environmental sanitation for poor and vulnerable communities
- Reduce the prevalence of WASH-related diseases, including Bilharzias (contracted from contaminated water), trachoma, Guinea worm, and diarrheal diseases, through the promotion of personal hygiene and environmental practices
- Improve the quality of life and health for people in rural areas by providing them with clean water and improved sanitation
- Reduce childhood mortality and lower the incidence of water-related illnesses
Volunteers in this field work alongside local communities to ensure that water, sanitation, and hygiene project, programs, and awareness are implemented effectively, professionally, and in accordance with the culture and practices of the local population.
Since there are so many processes involved in bringing clean water and sanitation to the masses, volunteers can choose among our three WASH project components including water construction and engineering, construction of Pit Latrines, and community outreach.
- WATER CONSTRUCTION & ENGINEERING. Volunteers taking on this component work in manual labor such as digging the water wells, constructing of Spring Water Well and digging of trenches alongside skilled and unskilled local builders to help with the construction work. Volunteers can also help in the Construction and renovation of Boreholes and water wells and Provide Technical Advice and skills to the WASH team in water. Both of these fields are fundamental in creating a working water system. Building materials, transportation costs, and repairs all have to be considered and managed. Much of this type of volunteer work requires physical labor, in sometimes extremely conditions Volunteers working on the construction or engineering components of clean water projects abroad should be well prepared for these conditions upon arrival.
2. CONSTRUCTION OF PIT LATRINES. The other project which is part of the water, sanitation & hygiene (WASH) project is the Construction of Pit Latrines: Pit latrine coverage in Uganda is low, 47%. A study done by UNICEF(1993) showed that pit latrine coverage was 20% and those families who have the pit latrines but do not using them, while others have them but in poor hygienic conditions, and yet others do not have them at all. As a result of this, there is a high incidence of diseases caused by poor sanitary conditions especially worm infestation and diarrhea diseases.
With lack of toilets, human waste is disposed of in polythene bags that are dumped in the bushes, roadsides, or even at water sources. This subsequently leads to outbreaks of diseases that thrive due to poor hygiene such as dysentery, cholera, typhoid, and diarrhea.
3. PUBLIC HEALTH AWARENESS OUTREACH. Unsafe sanitation practices and the spread of preventable diseases are a large part of Uganda water crisis. Therefore, volunteers are needed to help educate the public, teach basic hygiene skills, test wells and other water sources, and provide affordable treatment to those in need. The importance of marketing, public awareness raising and education, community outreach, and fundraising for a cause cannot be expressed enough; these are the drivers that make change possible. Volunteers who choose these types of WASH project component can expect to coordinate events, monitor and evaluate projects, write newsletters and press releases, and manage overall publicity of clean water projects. Assisting in the preparation of the WASH proposals and Grant writing for WASH Projects funding and Fundraise for the WASH projects using “CROWD FUNDING” Approach.
All the above projects components will offer you with both valuable life-changing experience and an opportunity make a difference. You will work alongside skilled and unskilled local builders to help with the construction work. These projects will be contributing and supporting the capacity building of rural communities through intercultural learning experience. Advising the WASH team in water, sanitation and hygiene promotion programming, in broad coordination with other sectors. You do not need prior experience this projects. These are a very hand on, hands-dirty sort of program. Enthusiasm, a good sense of humor, and a helping spirit are required.
To Apply to this Project, please contact our staff at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit our website at www.justicetourism.org
- Training Provided
- Housing Available
- Language/Cultural Support Available
- International Volunteers