A community Hygiene Awareness drive was held near Neelasandra, Bangalore on 9th August 2015, by Earth5R Bangalore team member Kavitha Jain. She noted several problems like that of open-drainage, abandoned piles of clothes, water clogging and garbage dumped near the drainage. The main aim of the activity was to create awareness regarding the importance of hygiene and how reducing pollution and adopting healthy lifestyle habits could contribute towards better hygiene.
The abandoned clothes and the debris left uncollected by the BBMP officials.
Kavitha interacted with around 4-5 families and was met with an enthusiastic response. The residents were made aware of hygiene problems caused by pollution and lack of cleanliness. A few of them used canned water for drinking purpose while most depended on the water supplied by the BWSSB (Bangalore Water Supply and Sewage Board).
The water is fetched from a common tap and directly consumed, without being boiled. Residents also stated that waste collection was not done more on a weekly basis and hence the garbage was disposed near the drainage. There was no method of waste segregation in place.
The other problem faced was the widespread prevalence of Mosquitoes. The unsanitary conditions lead to the increased menace of the mosquitos. Reportedly there has been an increase in the number of Dengue cases through the city, but the BBMP (Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike) has taken no action.
The open drainage near which waste was dumped earlier by the residents.
Keeping this in mind, Kavitha initiated a dialogue during her Hygiene Awareness drive on what action the community could take to prevent the spread of diseases and improve the hygiene standards of the community.
She also encouraged the practice of boiling drinking water and making better lifestyle choices. The activity helped the community members come together to tackle the problem of increased Mosquito breeding and bad hygiene conditions, all starting with a simple conversation.
The residents pledged to improve the hygiene standards of their surroundings and prevent the accumulation of stagnant water.
–Reported by Kavitha Jain. Edited by Vandita Morarka