Published on: 30/08/2021
What impact did we have in our focus countries in 2020? Sharing highlights from IRC's Annual Report.
"The essence of the health care facility is to save lives; it must be unheard of that people got ill from infections that could be easily avoided by a clean environment and safe water in the very spaces where they went to seek health care."
- Cecilia Birungi, District Health Inspector, Kabarole.
In 2020, we worked with the Mid-Western Umbrella for Water and Sanitation - a public utility - to chlorinate and protect the Kasenda Water Scheme and with the National Water and Sewerage Corporation (Fortportal Area) and Kabarole District Local Government (DLG) to extend piped water to more villages in Kabende Sub-County.
Between 2017 and 2019, the estimated number of people with a safely managed household connection in our partner district - Kabarole - rose from 16,000 to 41,000.
We helped Kabarole DLG conduct household sanitation improvement campaigns in 43 villages, and we bought and distributed 60 drinking water stations to 30 government Health Care Facilities (HCFs). Together with the local Hand Pump Mechanics Association, we renovated the toilets in 12 HCFs and constructed one new one.
We supported the Kabarole District COVID-19 Response Task Team to conduct infection prevention and control training for health care workers and cleaning staff in 54 HCFs. And we worked with the District Health Officer, Infectious Diseases Institute (IDI) and Baylor College of Medicine and Children's Foundation Uganda to buy and distribute Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to 50 HCFs.
Our collaborative work with CDC and IDI to produce and distribute alcohol-based hand sanitiser to all government HCFs and institutions in Kabarole substantially reduced the chances of health care workers trans-mitting COVID-19 and other diseases.
And in Bunyangabu district, we helped develop a comprehensive WASH Roadmap for achieving SDG 6 which will be finalised in 2021.
At the national level, we supported the Ministry of Water and Environment (MWE) in finalising and disseminating the National Operation & Maintenance Framework and Operational Manuals. We worked with the Ministry of Health to test the Sanitation and Health Fund, and with the Ministry of Education and Sports (Gender Unit) to develop the National Menstrual Health and Hygiene (MHH) Strategy and its monitoring framework, and to revise the National MHH Manuals and Guidelines.