Making Water Safe for Me by Myself
Making Water Safe for Me by Myself
Kathmandu Metropolitan City is the first metropolitan city of Nepal. Its area is 49.45 square kilometer. The metropolitan boarders with all other municipalities of Kathmandu except the three. The population of the city is 10,03,285 with population growth rate of 4.5%. The population of the city is increasing in unmanageable order due to migration of people from entire country. Therefore it is the major hindrance to find out actual population of city. This is the main factor which creates challenges in planning and implementation of any program in the city.
Availability of sufficient water with good quality is challenging problem for the people of this city. Most of the people, especially the poor renters and daily wagers, struggle daily for the drop of water for their everyday purposes. Most of the houses have their own municipal tap water, but the supply is once a week only. So most of them have to rely on other sources to get extra water such as tankers, water vendors, stone spout,, dug well, boring etc. This again challenges them in terms of purity, safety and expenditure. Each year, during the monsoon periods, people suffer from different types of waterborne diseases.
In 2015 AD, 80 laboratory confirmed cases of coliform in Kathmandu Valley was reported. In 2016 it reached to 151, out of which 31 cases were of Kathmandu district.
It is responsibility of each local government to provide safe and quality water in sufficient quantity to its people. But this is a hard job for every municipality without adequate planning. The Urban Health Division of Kathmandu Metropolitan City Office has run some intervention programs for making water safe by the consumers themselves. The District Public Health Office of Kathmandu organized Rapid Response Team meeting with its stakeholders and related organizations to run WASH interventions with joint effort without any duplication.
To support this initiation of the Kathmandu metropolitan and to intervene the monsoon preparedness program, UNICEF partnered with different WASH agencies such as Environment and Public Health Organization (ENPHO), Centre for Integrated Urban Development (CIUD), Minergy Initiative and Yuwalaya. At the beginning, ENPHO provided training to health workers working in Urban Health Clinics of different wards being operated under City Office Urban Health Division of the Kathmandu Metropolitan.
In the second step, these health workers gave training to Female Community Health Volunteers (FCHVs) of respected wards with the help of CIUD .Out of 558 FCHVs, 510 were trained. After the training, 15 hot spot areas of the city were selected for booth campaign by the experience of past outbreaks of waterborne diseases. Along with 10 volunteers from CIUD, these trained FCHVs were mobilized in 15 wards of KMC by conducting 131 booth campaigns. During the booth campaign, the FCHVs and health workers collected water sample from xx [D1] households and aware the people about purification of water. Total of 1441 water samples were collected out of which 492 (34%) samples were detected presence of coliform bacteria. The direct beneficiaries of 15 wards were 32,030 people during those booth campaigns.
Besides these booth campaigns, Yuwalaya created awareness by performing wall paintings in public areas, produced wall comics, conducted training for youth and children, flash mob performances, forum theatre performances at public areas, miking and public hearing. Sanitation campaign and sanitation fair at Basantapur were also organized with joint effort of all the WASH partners. Urban child centered risk mapping (UCCRM) was also conducted in different schools of the city. During this, the students also collect water sample from their communities.
Minergy Initiative did water quality improvement work. It did mapping of water vendors in different wards and collected water sample from those vendors. It was found that 63 retail water vendors in core area of the city serving 1388 households. They are selling 64,230 liters of water per day. 87% of their samples showed presence of e-coli. So, 72 water vendors were trained for purifications of water. Minergy also installed one bio sand water filter in retail vendor who is selling 21,000 liters of water per day. It came to know that poor renters, small cafes, canteens and street food venders are consuming those waters. Water samples were also collected from food vendors such as pani puri chat sellers, small fast foods, small tea shops and others. 38% of their water results presence of e-coli. 52% of them are using tap water, 39% jar water and 9% other sources of water as well, stone spouts etc. But amazingly it was found that 38% of jar water found to have e-coli while there was 37% in tap water. People have to use different sources of water due to lack of quantity so searching for the option for this may solve the problem.
On the other hand due to over extraction and also due to the lack of sufficient recharge areas, groundwater level of the city is decreasing. To aware the community and also to motivate the local government on groundwater recharge activities, orientation and awareness on water conservation, rainwater harvesting and groundwater recharging was conducted in ward no 5, 7, 12, 13, 15, 17, 18 and 19. Total 263 local people of those areas were oriented in this program. They urged this type of orientation on tole wise and demanded for installation of this plant in their community by their local government or by any other development partners.
During the program period, it came to know that people are so sensitive when it comes to drinking water. They are seeking the solution for their exponential water demand. Small efforts related to water as this project could mean a lot for them. These types of program have important role in controlling water one diseases as well. Water quality control awareness program along with conservation of water will be more effective than water quality control program alone. People are bearing risk on quality due to lack of quantity in the context of water. In future, we have to run these programs in an integrated way so that urban people like me could make water available and making it safe for me by myself.
[D1]Mention the number