CAR. COOPI builds new public toilets
28-02-2022 | di COOPI

CAR. COOPI builds new public toilets

In June 2021, COOPI - Cooperazione Internazionale organised the official presentation of two blocks of public latrines in the town of Zemio, Central African Republic, that were built in the framework of the project "I LA TENE TI TO NA MBONGO - Tous ensemble pour le sud-est" - Socio-Economic Recovery Programme in the South-East Zone of CAR (RELSUDE), financed by the European Union's Bêkou Fund and implemented in Consortium with ACTED, Concern Worldwilde, OXFAM, IMPACT Initiative and Free Press Unlimited. 

The Water, Hygiene and Sanitation (WASH) component of this project aims to contribute to the reduction of public health risks, to strengthen people's access to basic infrastructure and to improve their economic conditions by creating a healthy environment for human development.

To achieve this, COOPI team conducted a feasibility study to determine the types of structures to be put in place and their location. The analysis saw the active involvement of the community, which played a fundamental role in all phases of the activity, in full accordance with the participatory community approach that is at the heart of the WASH component. Following the analysis carried out, the two public latrine blocks were located on the aviation site and next to the Sub-Prefecture office, opposite the general hospital.

Each block was built in accordance with current standards and ensuring full accessibility and inclusiveness. In order to meet this objective, the latrines delivered to the community have privacy walls, with access ramps for people with disabilities, and the doors are equipped with an internal locking system that ensures the safety of the user and a hand-washing device with pedals.

In addition, in order to guarantee the sustainability of the structures, they will be managed by a management committee composed of members of the Zemio community - selected by COOPI, always in agreement with the population and the authorities - which will implement a specific plan by taking care of the cleaning and maintenance of the latrine blocks.

The handing over ceremony of the public latrines was a moment of joy and celebration in which the COOPI Head of Mission, the Sub-Prefect and other local authorities of Zemio participated together with the population.

Access to safe drinking water and sanitation has been recognised as a fundamental human right and is therefore a legal obligation for governments. The instability that CAR has experienced in recent years has had major health, social and economic impacts that also affect the accessibility and continuity of water and sanitation services. Indeed, according to the latest Humanitarian Needs Overview, in 2021 2.5 million people have critical needs in the field of WASH in CAR. Through the RELSUDE project and thanks to the support of the European Union, COOPI aims at responding to the difficulties presented above and guarantee the Central African population access to their fundamental rights by strengthening their resilience capacities in a holistic way.