Learning About Sanitation

Mrs. Bhagya Shrinivas is a resident of Karthikere village & panchayath Chikamagaluru district in India. She has recently married Mr. Shrinivas who is a small businessman with a small petty shop in Karthikere. They have their own house and live there alone.

They have only 0.05 acres property and don’t have any other assets; ultimately the family is dependent on her husband’s income. Their income is only Rs. 40,000/- per annum. Her family did not have basic facilities like toilets before intervention of the project and were used to the open defecation practice. From practicing this system they were facing lot of problems, especially Mrs. Shrinivas.

They walked nearly one kilometer from their house every day in the early morning to find a comfortable place to go for an open defection. The conditions were difficult. After an intervention through SKDRDP, Water.org’s partner, they built a good toilet. Mrs. Shrinivas, her husband, and neighbors contributed a lot to construct this beautiful toilet.

At first they hesitated to construct a toilet due to lack of knowledge about its usage and how to construct the toilet. But they now understand its importance after attending a water and sanitation meeting and training program conducted by SKDRDP. They built toilet within two months of attending the program. After the construction of the toilet, the Shrinivas’ are maintaining it and keeping it clean, which they were taught to do by SKDRDP field coordinators. Now the couple feels very happy because they are saving time and they are able to engage in agricultural activities at home. They feel comfortable using a toilet of their own, rather than walking long distance to find bushes.

Capital: New Delhi
Population of 1.2 billion
77 million lack access to safe water
769 million lack access to improved sanitation
59% of the total population lives on less than US$2 per day