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Health and Housing: Sanitation and reduction of electrical risk

At the beginning of the pandemic and having housing as the main line of defense against COVID-19, Hábitat para la Humanidad has developed workshops that could be easily implemented through the cell phone. Those were a great tool to help the houses continue to be safe and close to the families, accompanying them in their care and protection. 

Taking the learnings from the adaptation of the methodologies and thanks to financing granted by Fundación Selavip, Hábitat para la Humanidad is concretizing the improvement of the sanitary facilities of 350 families in the Metropolitan Area of Buenos Aires. The workshops began on March 16th and will be held in uninterrupted cycles until the goal is reached. They are led by volunteers who, as always, get in action to achieve the goals.  

The repairs improve a basic aspect of homes directly related to health: sanitation conditions. The families that sign up, previously carry out the training workshops through WhatsApp groups, with content on technical aspects for installation, recommendations, and precautions. The emphasis is placed on raising awareness of the importance of an adequate water system to prevent diseases and avoid the contamination of the waters, which affects the house and the environment. As important as these contents, are all those related to electric risk, which is also included in the training.

At the end of the workshops, the families receive a set that contains everything required for the installation: sink, shower, and electric water heater, toilet cistern, and a service tap. In addition, an extension in the electric installation is made and the grounding is installed for greater safety.

This initiative is carried out in Los Ceibos (La Matanza), a neighborhood in which the project Desarrollo de Barrios (Neighborhoods Development) is active, and the articulate work with different organizations to reach other locations: Fundación Todavía es Tiempo (Moreno), Fundación Franciscana (Moreno), Mujeres 2000 (Tigre) y Manos de La Cava (Barrio La Cava). In the following weeks, they hope to add more organizations. 

‘It was my first virtual workshop” and ‘I didn’t know it’ are the comments they receive the most in evaluations. The answers and testimonies of the families show the importance of having accurate information about basic housing issues, the great interest in making improvements in the houses, and the essential of having access to devices (cell phones) and Internet networks (Wifi or data plan) to, even in a pandemic, have the minimum that is required for each home to be a haven.

This action is part of this intention: there are still many people in conditions of housing vulnerability. This is why alliances are essential. Learn more about the project by clicking here.