“Hygiene and sanitation campaign at springs in the Kumba Municipality, South West Region of Cameroon”
Associated Organization: Geo-Environmental Resource Association (GERAS)
The present project is entitled “Hygiene and sanitation campaign at springs in the Kumba Municipality, South West Region of Cameroon”. It is a pilot project to be carried out at the Up-Station Spring, located at the valley between the Kumba Principal Prison and G.B.H.S Kumba. It is a 10 (ten) months environmental volunteering project in the domain of Water Resources and Climate Change to run from January to October 2014. The project duration is divided into two semesters (first semester running from January to May while the second semester runs from June to October). The project is to be executed by GERAS under the supervision of the Divisional Delegate of Environment, Nature protection and Sustainable Development (MINEPDED) for Meme Division.
Themes: Climate Science, Health, Water
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Meme division suffers from many environmental problems. Activities geared towards environmental sensitization and Climate change awareness are not common in the area.
Kumba, Meme Divisional headquarter has since last year 2012 been on the news as far as portable water scarcity is concerned. Pipe-borne water in this area has since changed colour and developed a strange odour, which left the inhabitants in a desperate situation. The water crisis caused the inhabitants to turn to natural springs, bottled and sachet water; and pipe borne water from surrounding localities which appear to be safer. Despite the fact that the water becomes clean from time to time, most inhabitants rely on these springs as a source of portable water. As such, the springs are very important natural assert to the community area of Kumba and its environs. Worth noting is the very degrading hygiene and sanitation state of these springs, induced by the users of these springs, which contribute to health problems (risk of skin diseases, malaria….), and environmental degradation (water stagnation due to poor drainage, siltation at the lower swampy area, improper disposal of plastics and associated waste at the spring site). GERAS has identified these problems and have brought up the present project to solve using as sample, the spring at Up-Station Kumba.
The project goal is to ensure constant and optimum hygiene and sanitation conditions at the Up-Station Spring which is GERAS’ starting point as a demonstration project to be followed by other springs in the area. The project will further sensitize the population on the importance of environmental health and the proper disposal of plastics and other waste. The project also aims at raising awareness on community adaptation and mitigation of climate change.
The major project activities will include the selection of project team, carrying out a training workshop for the project team, carrying out monthly clean up campaign at the site of the spring, producing a documentary on the project activities, publicizing and sensitization of the project on community radio, project signboard at project site, State Print Media, Radio and Television; monitoring and Evaluation; and reporting.
At the end of the project, it is expected that the population of Kumba in particular, South West Region and Cameroon in general will understand that the climate is changing and is having a serious impact on water resources in terms of quality, quantity, availability and future demand. The population will also learn about some minor activities that collectively increase Greenhouse Gas emission into the atmosphere and their negative impacts on global climate. Through this project, the target population will learn about environmental practices that lead to a reduction in Greenhouse gas emissions and thus putting in place a better climate protection strategy. Citizens will be more responsible in their actions, especially those impacting the environment. The inhabitants will be conscious about the importance of the hygiene and sanitation of this reference spring and other springs in the area as their interest in the spring water care increases. The success of this project will greatly contribute to nature protection.
Monitoring and Evaluation will be done at the beginning and ending of each semester and at the end of the project through group discussions, feedback sessions, surveys on users of the spring, and the use of questionnaires. Purchase of project materials will be done against the issue of receipts to ensure proper accountability.
Sustainability of the project will be assured through GERAS’ interest and motivation to continue with the program after the project ends. Since we will have all our physical project materials intact, GERAS can with its member contributions, continue pushing the project ahead while looking for other sources of external funding.