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Twatotela sana!

“Twatotela sana!” Margaret exclaims, with an infectious smile. That means “thank you very much”—but really, for her selfless work and genuine desire to bring about change in her community, we should be thanking her.

A volunteer Community Health Promoter (CHP) with Seeds of Hope since 2008, Margaret is a beacon of light and a voice of hope in her community, Mapalo, where she works to bring the good news of health.

Through her joy-filled eyes and quiet strength, you would never see the challenges her family of 11 has faced over the years. Before she began volunteering for Seeds of Hope, her family was often stricken with malaria and diarrhea, resulting in many trips to the clinic—trips they could not afford. “Every month we would have an outbreak of diarrhea,” Margaret says. She and her family were drinking from a contaminated source—an unprotected shallow well. They had no idea the water was making them sick.

When she attended her first hygiene training facilitated by Seeds of Hope, her life changed. Now, when asked about the last outbreak of diarrhea in her home, she says, ”I can’t remember … I don’t even know where the clinic is now!” After learning how to live in a healthy environment—one with a rubbish pit, tippy tap, latrine, and BioSand Filter—Margaret joined with Seeds of Hope to help us spread the word as a CHP. To date, Margaret has reached out to and trained 16 other households, two of which have received certificates from SoHIP recognizing their efforts to establish Healthy Homes.photo 1

Margaret is a witness to Mapalo’s transformation, but her vision extends far beyond her community—she dreams of a world where every home is free of disease. Margaret is committed to doing her part. How will we do ours?

 

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May 2013 Newsletter

Community Highlights: Stories from George

Seeds of Hope International Partnerships (SoHIP) strives to bring tangible relief, simple interventions, and practical solutions to community members. Nearly every day, SoHIP staff members are in the communities, conducting trainings, drilling boreholes, following up with BioSand Filter recipients, testing water sources, etc.—we’re committed to educating, supporting, and encouraging healthy homes and lifestyles. In particular, we’ve found our Integrated Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene training (iWASH) and Healthy Home programs to be two of the most effective ways to bring our holistic solutions to communities, while covering basic principles and practices to prevent disease and live a healthy lifestyle.

DSC02346In early May, SoHIP staff met with Community Health Promoter, Unety Sikaonga, while conducting an iWASH training in George, a nearby community. Unety shared that he never wanted to attend a SoHIP workshop because he thought he knew all there was to know about hygiene—even more than the trainers. When he eventually decided to attend a workshop, he realized that while he was practicing good hygiene, he was missing other areas, such as safe water filtration and storage methods. After a single workshop, he learned that while one intervention can reduce sickness, it takes a holistic approach to bring lasting health to a home.

“My family experienced a lot of diarrhea because we didn’t have safe storage containers. We used open buckets. But now [after the SoHIP training session], that is a thing of the past. We want to experience good health.”

dry rack may13During one of SoHIP’s Healthy Home Monitoring visits, another George resident, Queen Chikanda, learned a similar lesson: a Healthy Home is made of many parts—a latrine, rubbish pit, dry rack, clean water source, and safe water storage area, to name a few. “I didn’t have a latrine, but after the training, I saw how important it was to have,” she said, “So, I dug my own.” This kind of immediate stewardship of what attendees learn is common, and demonstrates beautifully how motivated community members are to create healthy environments. Thank you for supporting SoHIP as we educate, train, and support residents in making healthy changes in their lives and homes!

United Nations Recognizes SoHIP

WHO_UNICEF_HWTS_MonitoringToolkit_2012-1Near the end of 2012, the World Health Organization and Unicef, branches of the United Nations released a manual, ‘A toolkit for monitoring and evaluating household water treatment and safe storage programmes,’ which was widely distributed in early 2013. In it, Seeds of Hope is recognized for contributions to household water treatment and safe storage (HWTS) program development. We’re thrilled to receive this acknowledgement, and know it will continue to motivate us to invest in our mission—forming international partnerships for the good of the global community.

To read the entire United Nations document with the reference to SoHIP, visit http://www.who.int/household_water/resources/toolkit_monitoring_evaluating/en/index.html.

New Resource Center in Solwezi

Seeds of Hope is partnering with Zambia’s largest mining company, First Quantum Minerals (FQM), to build a new Resource Center in Solwezi. Located approximately 300 miles from Ndola, Solwezi is experiencing population growth too rapid for the area’s water, sanitation and agricultural infrastructure to support. To mitigate this, FQM identified SoHIP as a strategic partner in bringing holistic development, clean water, and on-going support to the citizens of Solwezi. We are excited to be expanding, and further developing the Copperbelt region.

New Office in Redding, California

Seeds of Hope–US has a new satellite office in Redding, California. While the official SoHIP–US headquarters will remain in San Luis Obispo, California, the Redding office has begun building mobile demonstration units, planning fundraisers, and developing international team trainings. For more information regarding our Redding location, please e-mail info@sohip.org.


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