Building and using low-cost latrines can save lives
Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 25 May, 2016 - For many people in remote areas of Indonesia close to some of the world’s most perfect surf breaks, open defecation continues to be an urgent problem and a critical health issue.
Some of you may have surfed at the extraordinary break, Lakey Peak, on the island of Sumbawa. Did you know that in this region the diarrhoea rate amongst children under five is exceptionally high at 43 percent? Pretty grim stuff. This statistic is linked to unhygienic practices like open defecation and lack of access to clean water.
Meet Mr Abdurrahim, a member of the water and sanitation committee in Kanca Village, in the sub-district of Parado, on the island of Sumbawa. With SurfAid training and education, Mr Abdurrahim learned about the open defecation problem in his village and the impact it is having on the health of the community he loves.
Mr Abdurrahim has not only assisted his neighbours in building latrines but has also started a small business selling low-cost latrines made out of local materials to neighbouring villages.
With this one simple change, Mr Abdurrahim made a significant improvement in the health of his own community and the wider sub-district.
Last year SurfAid helped 315 families obtain latrines and access sanitation in Sumbawa alone. We are working to help another 367 families in Parado sub-district do the same this year.