In co-operation with our Malawi based charity PumpAid we are looking to support a programme of WASH and nutrition at pre-school nursery’s (CBCCs) and surrounding communities in Mchinji District, Central Malawi. Pre-schools offer an entry point for directly addressing health and nutrition issues for children under 5 and act as a hub for serving the broader community.
At each CBCC funding will provide a water point and maintenance training, toilets, handwashing facilities, hygiene behaviour change education and nutritious kitchen gardens at the pre-schools. WASH and nutrition interventions in surrounding communities will reinforce benefits at the pre-schools for young children, as well as improving conditions for populations in surrounding communities.
The challenge: Malawi has over 10,000 pre-schools (Community-Based Childcare Centres or CBCCs) for children under 5, yet currently fewer than 25% of them have water and sanitation. As a result, children are commonly exposed to water-borne diseases and ill health. Across Malawi, there is a 24% rate of diarrhoea in under 5’s, a leading cause of mortality, and 40% of children under 5 are stunted. Many are frequently unable to attend school and suffer from reduced cognitive development and slow learning ability, as a result of stunting. This means that they are unable to flourish and reach their full potentials.
The primary aims of PumpAid’s integrated pre-school nursery and community WASH and nutrition programme are:
· Improved health outcomes among young children at CBCCs (primarily diarrhoea and geophagia)
· Improved hygiene behaviours of children under 5 and surrounding communities, including a cadre of WASH champions (carers and parents) for ongoing promotion
· Improved pre-school education facilities, food intake and school readiness
· WASH management and maintenance structures established in CBCCs to ensure ongoing reliability of installations.
· Increased numbers of children attending CBCCs due to improved health outcomes
· Improved diets for children under 5 at CBCCs and surrounding communities
· CBCCs with plans for greater sustainability, with input from appropriate stakeholders
· Installing appropriate water and sanitation facilities at CBCCs. Water pumps, toilets (boys and girls) and handwashing stations.
· Improvements to food preparation areas and infrastructures where required.
· Setting up and training Management Committees at the CBCCs, including governance, operations and maintenance to ensure ongoing reliability of installations.
· Establishing kitchen gardens by providing initial inputs and supporting the Committees to develop these as a source of diversified food for children, with the ability to sell surplus to off-takers.
· Training CBCC carers, Community Health Workers (CHWs) & Health Surveillance Assistants (HSAs) in child-appropriate behaviour change methodologies and hygiene promotion at CBCCs. Training, ongoing mentoring and monitoring includes food hygiene, the importance and prevention of WASH and nutrition-related illness and disease transmission, clean play areas and safe disposal of faeces.
· WASH promotion and nutrition support/advice in surrounding communities. Training and working with HSAs and District Health Officers (DHOs) to undertake community WASH awareness to improve WASH status in local (feeder) communities.
· Supporting Management Committees to develop and implement sustainability plans exploring income generation options, including the sale of excess crops from the kitchen garden, chicken breeding and egg sales, and tailoring.
Community contribution: The Management committee will be expected to support the installation process with the supply of sand and local labour. The Management Committee and Carers at the CBCC are all volunteers.