88 Water Tanks in Primary Schools; 69 Protected Springs; 4 Hand Dug Wells;
over 1,000 smokeless stoves; 222 locally elected, trained committees managing their own projects;
and a lot of WASH teaching and WASH awareness murals.
11 years; a lot of hard work; a lot of fun; and a big DIFFERENCE.
PHASE 1 Community baseline survey identifying the most urgent projects, feeding into Phase 2; understanding expectations
PHASE 2 Preparation - sensitising and mobilising community partners; collecting materials
PHASE 3 Implementation - construction of water tanks; protection of water sources; stove construction training; establishing & training committees
PHASE 4 Monitoring projects; supporting & further training of committees
Every Little BIG Africa project is conducted over 4 phases. There are no time restrictions to these phases and they are based on community participation, time and finances available.
The first stage is the Research and Preparation. We have an ongoing baseline survey taking place throughout Manafwa which will eventually cover every village and school within this large district. This survey, alongside local government information, helps us to identify the most neediest communities and schools in the project area and opens up dialogue between a community (whether a school community or village community) and LBA.
This is also an important time for both partners (LBA and the community) to understand each other's expectations, and for LBA to assess the interest and willingness for a community to partner with LBA on potential projects. No project is forced on a community: sometimes a school or a community is not willing or not ready at that time, and LBA respects this. It is vital for the sustainability and maintenace of a project that the community embraces the project as their own.
As a result of Phase One, LBA is constantly identifying and grading potential communities throughout Manafwa based on their need and feasibility for the project. This includes communities in desperate need of clean water, schools without access to water, and households struggling to cook more than one meal a day.
Phase two is the Preparation Stage. Using the baseline survey, LBA approaches identified schools and communities to begin preparation for Phase 3, whether it is protecting a water source, building a water tank in a primary school or training community members in energy efficient stoves. A series of meetings take place with project stakeholders - both men and women from the community, including young people, local leaders at district, sub county, parish and village level, School Management Committees, PTAs, Headteachers, Teachers, parents and pupils and neighbours to name a few. There is no set number of meetings we hold, but it is rarely less than three to increase the community involvment, knowledge, understanding and participation in the project.
All LBA projects have a community contribution of locally available materials, which is more often than not collected free of charge from around the community, and all projects utilise local voluntary labour which is also mobilised through the sensitisation meetings. Once everything is in place and contracts signed construction begins.