Through its various activities, the Antenna Foundation has developed expertise in water and hygiene, energy, traditional medicine, agroecology, nutrition and microcredit. Our new transversal Schools programme, created in 2019, collaborates with these different departments to transmit solutions to future generations.
This programme builds on know-how gained in the areas of water and sanitation in Bolivia, Haiti and Kenya during which Antenna validated the pilot phase.
Through the programme, schools become a centre for high-impact awareness. This allows students and the community to take advantage of the health and economic benefits of these new technologies that meet basic needs.
By relying on parent associations, we aim from the outset to empower the project by creating an Antenna distribution network (using revenue-generating activities) to sustainably finance the project.
In the long term, local governments will replicate this model, investing for the benefit of the community on a sustainable basis.
We are currently present in four countries:
- Burkina Faso
- Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC)
Clean water at school project in Burkina Faso
In Burkina Faso, estimates suggest that only 43% of the rural population has access to safe drinking water (UNICEF, 2015). More than 4,500 children under the age of 5 die of diarrhoea annually (Mediaterre, 2018). The Burkinabe government is working to improve the country’s water infrastructure and raise awareness of the importance of safe drinking water.
In order to improve drinking water quality and hygiene in schools, Antenna has developed a pedagogical approach with the Ministry of Education; the Ministry of Health has validated the approach. The teaching staff has access to a “Clean Water at School” manual. The project organises some 6,500 children in 20 schools into Water Clubs to produce drinking water using WATA, build washbasins and initiate behaviour changes in the community.
Rano Madio project in Madagascar
More than 12 million people in Madagascar lack access to clean drinking water (WASHwatch.org, 2015). In most cases, the resulting waterborne diseases affect children, putting their health and schooling at risk.
Since 2016, when Antenna introduced the pilot phase of the Rano Madio project, 8 schools – about 2,500 students – have gained access to drinking water through the implementation of a rainwater recovery and chlorination system using locally produced chlorine to disinfect school latrines and purify water. In addition, Antenna has promoted the importance of hygiene to prevent water-related diseases. In the medium term, the programme will benefit 9 additional schools, or about 2,000 students.
School in Nepal project
In Nepal, water, hygiene and nutrition remain major problems: 55% of the population lacks access to basic sanitation (World Health Organization, 2015) and 3,500 children die each year from waterborne disease (Nepal’s Department of Health Service, 2012).
The project aims to raise awareness about themes such as the environment, sustainable agriculture and water through a multilateral approach.
In the framework of the School in Nepal project, Antenna has provided WATA installations to schools in order to produce chlorine locally and has taught teachers how to use them. The project has also built vegetable gardens at schools and exposed teachers and students to environmental concerns and agro-ecological techniques. Finally, we added an anti-lice approach to the project in order to destigmatise children with lice.
42,500 students from 87 schools are participating in the global project.
Healthy schools project in the Democratic Republic of the Congo
The Congolese government and UNICEF are co-managing the School Sanitation Programme, which aims to facilitate access to drinking water and raise awareness of water hygiene issues among children. Following the success of the Clean Water at School project in Burkina Faso, our partner in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, MajiMaisha-Antenna, initiated a test phase for the introduction of WATA technologies into the project.
Since 2016, the programme has offered training on the use of WATA technologies to teachers so that they can produce chlorine locally in schools. The programme has trained more than 2,500 students in 5 schools on the importance of respecting hygiene measures and has provided them with access to drinking water.