Meherun Nesa, a woman entrepreneur from Bauniabadh, said the activities done under ESDO's WASH project, in association with Water Aid, during the Covid-19 pandemic were excellent.
"Apart from those, this is a great consolation for us during the pandemic that all of you stood by us as well."
There is no awareness of Covid-19 among the people in the community. They think Covid-19 is a disease of the rich and not of the poor. In such a situation, the Wash Crisis project has worked to create awareness among them.
The project has conducted a variety of awareness programmes in the community, including
1. Installation of contactless hand washing devices: Installing contactless hand washing devices at the entrance to the slum community has made it easy for people to wash their hands. There is a running water system and soapy water for washing hands. A community change agent assists in making soapy water.
The people of the area are very happy to get the hand washing devices because they can now wash their hands with soapy water whenever needed.
2. Distribution of powder in community toilets to keep the habit of using soapy water on. Soapy water activities continued in every toilet of the community during the pandemic. Now the people of the community prepare soapy water themselves, thus continuing their hand washing activities properly. Our change agents are following that up.
3. Disinfection is done in the community area and toilets through sprays. Besides, leaflets on how to make disinfectants were distributed in four slums. As a result, people are now using bleaching powder to disinfect their homes, roads, and toilets.
4. Announcing awareness messages through loudspeaker, such as wearing masks while going out of the house, not spitting here and there, adhering to social distancing, keeping the surroundings of the house clean, and washing hands properly.
5. Creating a circle in front of each toilet, which is followed up by community change agents as well as project staff.
6. Hygiene kits were distributed among 950 families in four communities. This benefited the people in the community who used to live from hand to mouth. This was because there was no work for the people in the community at the time and they even struggled to manage food. In such a situation, it was very difficult for them even to use soap or maintain cleanliness.
7. Providing safety gear to community volunteers since the outbreak of Covid-19.
During the distribution of hygiene kits, the commissioner of ward 2 said he appreciated the ESDO initiative.
Teker Bari Secretary Md Khorshed Alam said, "As ESDO has worked in our area, most of the people wash their hands with soapy water. During the pandemic, I myself helped with the distribution of leaflets and hygiene kits."
Change agent Sonia said, "Covid-19 could not affect us. During the pandemic, we distributed leaflets and hygiene kits in every house, put festoons on walls and toilets to create Covid-19 awareness. As a result, people have become aware."
"Many people used to eat without washing their hands by mistake. Now everyone is very aware because of Covid-19. They wash their hands with soapy water. Now they understand the importance of washing hands. Maybe that is why the virus did not spread in our slums," she added.