In the wake of the devastating flood occurred in KP (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa) on July 28th, 2010, water sources, water supply systems and sanitation systems had severely been affected across the Province, leaving a huge chunk of population without access to safe water supply and adequate sanitation facilities making them susceptible to water borne diseases. In view of the current situation, the water and sanitation infrastructure needed rehabilitation along with rigorous hygiene promotion campaigns. BEST with support of UNICEF successfully implemented the project titled “Provision of Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Services (WASH) in District Charsadda” with an aim to prevent and reduce the incidence of water and sanitation related diseases.
Charsadda is one of the worst affected districts of the province and according to the official figures, of the total population of 1.7 million; nearly 75% have been affected. 71,819 household have been affected in 85 villages of the district including 34,657 houses damaged and 145,810 people displaced; and are compelled to live in camps, schools, colleges and with host communities. Around 60 education facilities, 55 water supply schemes, 3 bridges and 34 km road have been destroyed.
According to Multiple Indicators Cluster Survey (MICS) 2008, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, sanitation coverage in district Charsadda was 44% less than the average sanitation coverage in KP which is 57%. Use of improved sources of drinking water is 75%, though these are not necessarily safe because most of these improved sources contain bacteria. Hand washing with soap after use of latrine is not practiced by 49% of the population and 63% of population do not wash hands with soap before eating meal. Charsadda was not having good indicators related to water, sanitation and hygiene before flood and flood has further intensified the situation and the need for a scrupulous hygiene campaign and to intensify efforts and enhance investment in water and sanitation sector has increased.
Global Hand Washing Day was celebrated in Charsada. Students presented different skits highlighting hygienic and unhygienic practices and its impact on the people. A debate among the students on “How to promote hand washing practices” was also conducted in which role of teachers, parents, community elders and children was elaborated in the promotion of hand washing practices. Children performed on a “Hand washing Poem”. At the end a Walk was arranged to sensitize the community on the importance of hand washing.