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Improving Hygiene Conditions in Village

Pooja Shrestha, 19, of Dhading District, curiously peeps out of her house window. Holding her elder son in one hand and carrying her younger son in another arm she comes out and stands in front of her main door.

Pooja Shrestha is one of the vulnerable people affected by the earthquake. She was walking down the road to go to the nearby health post when the earthquake struck. Pregnant and unable to run, Pooja somehow managed to find an open space to protect herself and her unborn baby.  

“I was terrified, I did not know what to do; all I could think about was to save myself and my baby.” Pooja had no option than to return back home to her husband. On her way home, she saw many houses totally damaged and wished everything to be alright in her house. But, to her disappointment, she was devastated to see her house turned into rubbles. She saw her husband sit infront of the house with his hands on his head. Although saddened by their loss, Pooja and her husband decided to stay in a makeshift tent along with other members of the community.

Pooja’s story represents the voices of thousands of people affected by the earthquake as most of their houses were destroyed, and their belongings were buried inside the rubbles. Moreover, with the start of monsoon season the communities were vulnerable to increased risk of communicable diseases as many of them were deficating in open.  

“Our toilets were destroyed, so most of the people were deficating right outside the fields in front of our tent”, says Pooja. She further adds, “I was worried that we might catch diseases from other people as many of us were living under one tent”.    

During such time of crisis Pooja and her husband were worried about an outbreak of major disease as monsoon was soon approaching. Pooja and her husband somehow managed to take out pieces of cloth and a toothbrush from the rubbles, which they gave to their elder son. For days, Pooja and her family had to live in an unhygienic environment.

One afternoon when Pooja and her husband were making plans on how to survive the monsoon, they saw people from the village carrying red and blue buckets. She rushed down the hill and stood in the queue.  Pooja‘s happiness had no bounds when she received the hygiene kits. “I was informed by my neighbors that CARE is distributing soaps in buckets. “I am extremely happy to get the hygiene kit, everything in the hygiene kit are useful. I am using the soaps to wash my hands and also my clothes.” She further adds, “Drinking water is very scarce in this village, we have to walk to the nearby tap to get drinking water, so I have used the bucket to store drinking water. I am comforted that my family can now drink clean water.”  

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