PSA initiated collaboration among Union Galva Steel Inc., the city government of Cagayan de Oro and German Technical Cooperation (GTZ) Fit for School program to promote handwashing among students of Kamakawan Elementary School in Cagayan de Oro City. This public school has 372 students and is located 800 meters from the national highway, so the teachers spend an hour and a half walking to and from the school each day. With technical assistance from the Fit for School project, the school has been promoting daily brushing of teeth using fluoride toothpaste and hand washing with soap before eating and after using the toilet. Toothpaste and soap are being provided by DepEd, but instead of a proper sink, the children only have bamboo poles which easily collapse.
To address this problem, PSA consultant Nene Narvaez requested the assistance of Union Galva Steel (UGC) to design and fabricate hand washing stations for the school children. UGC will install the 6 stations before classes start in June and will donate a communal since to GTZ for demonstration purposes. The school’s parent-teacher association (PTA) will provide the labor for the construction. The 6 units will cost P60,000 (P10,000 each) with UGC funding P48,000, PSA P9,000 and the PTA P3,000 in the form of labor. Below is the design of the hand washing station. The PSA and Fit for School program will do a handwashing promotion campaign in the school and measure the increase in handwashing after a certain period of time. In addition, the CDO city government committed to pass an ordinance or an executive order requiring soap in public restrooms.