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Understanding the effects of bad sanitation




Activities taken (and adapted) from the 'A Million Hands' resource pack.

1) In lodges Beavers to discuss what they think Kenya is like (linking to BP and Scouting history). Continue by asking where people in Kenya may get their water from. Explain, if needed, that not everyone has the luxury of a tap and many people have to walk many miles to fill a bucket up with water. Beavers then to transfer a bucket of water one at a time as a relay from one side of the hall to the other. Discuss afterwards what this felt like and what it may feel like if they had to carry 20 litres all in one go.

2) Show a bottle of dirty water (pre made). Ask what it is. Explain that the water they have just carried from the well looks like this. In lodges, Beavers to discuss whether this is good or not. Discuss that this water is full of germs and diseases many are often from poor sanitation. Play poopla - Laid 5 hoops/buckets on the floor at different distances from the throwing line and label with points (50, 40, 30, 20, 10). The aim of the game is to score the highest score by throwing the poo. Set up a leaderboard on the flip chart/board. Everyone should take turns throwing the six poos into the buckets and their score should be written on a sticky note and stuck on the leaderboard. They must stay behind the masking tape line when they throw the poo. After the game has finished, explain to the group that the buckets were meant to represent toilets. Ask them what would happen if the poo that didn’t go into the buckets was real. Explain that 2.3 billion people across the world don’t have access to adequate toilets and so have to defecate in the open. Highlight that this creates an environment which is polluted and spreads disease rapidly.

3) Discuss what should and should not go in the toilet. Have a range of images that the Beavers can group into what goes into the toilet and what shouldn't.

Finish the evening by either reading the poem of story:
Nantenaina Hery Randrianarison, aged 12, lives in one of the richer houses in the area and they have their own well in the yard�
Nantenaina speaks of her daily routine and how it has been greatly improved by WaterAid�
‘I collect water five times a day from the well. I collect water before school. The water is clear. It doesn’t taste of anything. We don’t get sick from the water. The well is ours and so we use this for our family. I go to school close by. We don’t have water at school – we get it from the field. The colour is brown and there are worms in the water. We don’t drink it when it’s like this. On those days I go to a pump and collect water. There are two latrines here and ten people use them. It’s made of bricks and cement and has a roof. In the rainy season it is fine. We learn about hygiene at school. We wash our hands before eating food and after we use the latrines. I haven’t told family these messages though as I forget them. It would make us healthy to have clean water. There wouldn’t be animals or insects in it.’

Water Walk: At one mile I Wish my day could Start like yours: on a Gentle walk to school, and Later to a shopping mall, a Party or a local park� At Two miles…I contemplate what It’s like at your place, to turn a Tap and see the flow of water for A clean of teeth, a drink, a shower, Wash of clothes� At three miles…I Think of you, perhaps you’re in a Swimming pool or eating at a Restaurant with water bottles On your table - you ask And then they’re simply There� At four miles…�I Wonder if you ever give An idle thought about my trek Through scorching heat - to The spring, the riverbank, a Muddy hole, where I collect The dirty water I must drink� I start the four mile journey Home…��a full container on My back� I day-dream about Other children far away From Africa and wonder What the distance is Of their daily Water walk�


  • Global issues
  • sanitation
  • water

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  • Global Issues - Water filter