WATER & DIGITAL LITERACY EDUCATION
Many school children in developing countries still suffer from chronic diarrhea and other diseases caused by contaminated water and are waiting for their governments to help with infrastructure for clean water and sanitation. There are many simple measures that school communities can employ to improve their own water situations now, ranging from simply washing their hands, to collecting rainwater or filtering pathogens out theirdrinking water, but they may not know about these measures. The challenge is educating them so they can start to take action themselves.
Our solution is to engage digital literacy as a tool in helping school communities in developing countries to improve their own water situations. We help establish computer labs for the schools. Children can start their digital learning on computers, and at the same time, preloaded on their computers is a digital guide that we are developing to educate them about water issues. The different sections include information on the water crisis globally right now, where drinking water comes from, types of water contaminants, how unclean water effects their health, how to take care of themselves and their environment for health and hygiene, simple water filtration and treatment methods, new technologies in development and other resources about water which will be relevant to them.
For each school that we provide a computer lab to, we will also help them to devise and fundraise for a customized water improvement plan. We will involve the children in the planning and give them some decisions to make, as well help start a WASH club for the children at the school. This will help them to have a sense of ownership in the project and will be more likely to use the water plan correctly and to help maintain it for the longterm. Without waiting for government interventions for municipally piped water networks, school children can improve their water situations themselves through education and develop confidence, knowledge and self-agency. Educating and engaging the next generation in critical to longterm sustainable solutions to the water crisis.
Each of our recipient schools will have hundreds of children to benefit from a computer lab, digital and water education. For example, at the Global Outreach School in Masantigie, Sierra Leone, 450 children will benefit. But we also want to make our guide on water education to be accessible to many more school communities via a published book, or from the internet, so this resource can be widely used and its benefits scaled. See Resources page.
our published resource guide on clean water