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Meet the Mitalas and the tremendous transformation

In communities of WASH intervention, Africa Water Solutions often meets families that melt the team’s heart with joy after experiencing massive transformation. Occasionally, when we think of a house, we picture walls, a roof, windows, doors; but when you fill those walls with families trying to build a better life for themselves and their children, that house becomes a home. We believe that a home is the foundation, primary building block for healthy families.

Mitala, 34 years old and his family live in Kimbugu village, Ssi Bukunja Sub-county, Buikwe district. He and his wife, Nakkonde Faith of 32 years have five children –aged between 12 years and 14 months old. Before receiving WASH trainings, the Mitalas experienced sicknesses resulting from consuming contaminated water for drinking.  These sicknesses regularly resulted in hospital visits, which created unplanned medical expenses, taking a significant toll on the family whose source of income is as good as inexistent.

“I had never thought of the importance of having clean water in our home; even when our children fell sick, I did not associate their illnesses to the consumption of contaminated water and dirty environment we were living in. We were always visiting the hospital for typhoid and diarrhea” Mitala narrates his family’s previous health situation.”

The Mitala family has experienced a wholistic transformation as a result of AWS training in WASH best practices that drastically reduced the disease burden on their family. Our staff became more intentional on his household after several failed attempts to train him and his family members on improving the WASH condition of their home. On our initial visits, the family house was dilapidated and rugged; Mitala himself was elusive – he spent much of his time away from home. They had no kitchen, no handwashing facilities and were practicing open defecation in the neighboring bushes. After intense triggering and training, we succeeded in getting Mitala to spend more time improving his home; he reinforced the leaking roof with better iron sheets, smeared his house walls to make it more firm and beautiful, he now has a proper latrine fitted with a satopan and handwashing facilities installed both at the latrine area and entrance to his home, the family now has a good kitchen, dish rack and are practicing SODIS to improve their drinking water quality which greatly reduces diarrheal disease burden on the family.