How annoying is it to have flies circling around and landing on food when the whole family is having meals? This small play by members of Health Club in Diem village, Tan Dan commune, Mai Chau district, Hoa Binh province made villagers laugh out loud cheerfully, especially when "giant flies" showed up.
It was a simple story: This family kept using their garden as toilet instead of building a closed one. Day after day, along with horrible smell filling the house, flies had become frequent "uninvited" guests of every meal, every family activity. Inevitable consequences are diarrhea and other gastrointestinal diseases.
This story is not an exception in communities like Diem village. Unhygienic habits still need changing. It is also one of the goals of the Health Clubs by World Vision Vietnam.
Once got villagers interested with such funny plays, health officers would tell them about the importance of the standard toilets. It can be either a fully facilitated one with toilet seat, paper and drainage system, or a simple septic latrine, but most importantly, closed and frequently cleaned.
Of course, building even the most simple one can be a challenge for the villagers with limited incomes. Thus the families who register will be assisted by World Vision Vietnam with a toilet seat, a few materials and a small amount of cash. This project also has the support from World Vision Malaysia.
Some families in Diem village have managed to build new toilets thanks to these supports. A few others, acknowledging the benefits of hygienic toilets to the health, especially of the children, have done with their own pocket money.
However, a majority of households in the village and the commune is still living their old way, when the gardens are still available for them to make use of.
“We hope when life is proved to be positively improved in the families with new toilets, the rest will follow", shared Bui Thi Bo, Head of Diem village Health Club.