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Educate. Empower. Act. The mission of Project WET is to reach children, parents, educators and communities of the world with water education. We invite you to join us in educating children about the most precious resource on the planet — water.
In 2007, limited hand washing systems and a lack of available safe water led to a cholera outbreak in Entebbe, Uganda. A disease largely preventable by proper hand washing and sanitation, cholera spread quickly to the student population at the Lake Victoria Primary School in Entebbe, devastating enrollment at the school. In a matter of months, the student body had dropped from more than 2,000 students to just 400.
The next year, as part of a USAID-funded effort to improve water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) education and fight diseases such as cholera, the Lake Victoria Primary School adopted Project WET's innovative WASH curriculum. Coupled with the addition of health and sanitation lessons into existing curriculum, teachers and the headmaster have noticed students more frequently washing their hands and exercising improved personal hygiene. “Students started asking teachers ‘Where is soap?’ after learning the Hand Washing Song,” reports Aggrey Oluka, the school’s science teacher.
“Students started asking ‘Where is soap?’—Aggrey Oluka, science teacher, Lake Victoria Primary School, Uganda
A previously unused water tank also has been utilized, providing an additional location for students to wash their hands. Students requested increased access to clean water, and the school administrators answered by setting up a large station where they boil water for students’ daily drinking-water needs. Future plans include student involvement and construction of “Tippy-Taps” (hand washing stations), using an activity from Project WET’s Educators Guide (Hand Washing How To), at the girls’ and boys’ bathrooms. Increased enrollment (and an increase in the number of teachers), ready access to boiled water for consumption, multiple hand-washing stations and higher scores on the Ugandan National Exams are additional positive changes at the school.
In honor of Lake Victoria School's energetic adoption of the Project WET WASH materials and impressive improvements in health, Project WET in 2010 designated the school as its first Project WET Healthy Habits Model School. The Project WET Foundation is working with the school to provide small grants for specific community improvements that will further develop the school's WASH resources.
Project WET’s Healthy Water, Healthy Habits, Healthy People resources, developed in conjunction with USAID and African water experts, include four water education components: an Educators Guide, two Kids In Discovery series (KIDs) student activity booklets and an interactive poster. Use of these colorful and fact-filled materials is helping Lake Victoria School provide students with the education necessary to exercise basic health-and hygiene-related habits that, in turn, prevent many water-borne diseases. Through cooperation with local partners, Project WET materials have been distributed to thousands of schools in 15 sub-Saharan countries, reaching millions of students.
To support projects such as this one, donate to Project WET today. Your gift is tax-deductible!