Central African Republic

CAR was one of the poorest countries in the world even before brutal conflict erupted there in 2013. Almost half a million people have been displaced within CAR, with most now living in displacement camps. Less than 35% of the population have access to safe drinking water and proper sanitation facilities: the need for such basic services is particularly pressing in the camps.

Region

Bangui, Boda and surrounding areas.

Who’s being helped

We are working with some of the most vulnerable people in CAR, many of them badly affected by recent conflict.

The project

Our partner, FATEB, has been hosting 2,000 displaced people in tents set up in the grounds of its own premises in Bangui. It has also been ensuring that taps providing drinking water in other camps are in good working order, making repairs where necessary. JUPEDEC, another partner, has been training people in the importance of proper sanitation and hygiene.

We have also been working at displacement camps and schools in the town of Boda. We’re creating school health clubs where boys and girls aged between nine and 15 meet with specially trained teachers and plan hygiene awareness-raising activities in the wider community. We’re also promoting better hygiene and sanitation standards through everything from drama to songs.

Changing lives

Yamite’s toilet is not yet complete but already she and her family are reaping the health benefits of our local partner’s work in her village.

So far her family have dug the pit: now they’re making the bricks to build the walls. Before Toilet Twinning’s partner JUPEDEC came to Mpoko Loko village, about 20 miles from Bangui, people used to relieve themselves outdoors. After JUPEDEC’s teaching about hygiene and the need for sanitation, Yamite was determined to protect her family. ‘I told my husband that it was very bad to continue defecating in the bush because it puts our lives at risk and those of our kids. Since we have adopted washing hands, I have noticed a reduction of diarrhoea in my family. I am now telling my neighbours to build their latrines too.’

Displacement camps

Ericaine fled from militia who attacked her community one day, shooting people and burning homes to the ground.

She fled to a church compound, where tarpaulin provided her with shelter from the rain. But nothing shielded her from the diarrhoea and sickness that was rife in the camp.

Toilet Twinning supported a water and sanitation project that brought fresh water and installed pit latrines at her camp. Children stopped going to toilet in the open. Health and hope was restored.

‘We are so thankful for the toilets. Thank you for giving us back our health.’