Hygiene practices like handwashing with soap and water have played an essential part in COVID-19 prevention.
However, difficulty accessing necessary hygiene items like soap and hand sanitiser and lack of proper WASH station facilities with clean water could lead to ineffective hand wash practices and increased disease. This is the problem that many schools face today, mostly when the country has already recorded COVID-19 cases.
Because of its importance to ensure schools are resilient and students understand good hygiene practices, World Vision Solomon Islands is currently rolling out a COVID-19 program to assist a total of 106 Schools in Honiara and surrounding areas, East Guadalcanal, and Makira- Ulawa Provinces.
The project includes providing cartons of soaps to schools, COVID-19 posters and construction of WASH station facilities.
Since last week, the World Vision team has been distributing cartons of soaps to schools in Honiara. The team managed to cover Bishop Epalle Catholic Primary and Secondary, Tamlan CHS, Kelyn Primary School, White River Primary and Secondary and St. John Primary and Secondary, Mbokona Primary and Secondary, Advance Primary School, Honiara High School, Tuvaruhu Primary and Secondary and Coronation, Mbokonavera Primary and Secondary, Koloale, Mbua Valley, Florence Young and Kukum SDA.
This will continue to other schools this week and in the future. Schools that have received cartons of soap were happy and have applauded the project.
Mary Inasimae, Principal of Mbua Valley Community High School, said the donation would boost handwashing in their school.
“I thank World Vision for this donation, as it addressed the need of the school, especially for proper hygiene practices like hand washing,” she said.
Ms Inasimae added the donation would help the school save money they could have used to pay for soaps and other administrative costs. Meanwhile, Florence Young Christian School Principal George Saemane said his school is happy to be included in the project.
“I am happy that World Vision has included Florence Young Christian School as part of the project and looking forward to partner on the project’s progress,” Mr Saemane said.
Following soap distributions, the project will embark on COVID 19 awareness to schools and WASH stations, starting with schools that lack such facilities.
The project is funded by USAID through the Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (BHA) and is also currently engaging with Churches and Communities in Makira, Honiara, Guadalcanal, Malaita Temotu Provinces.