Towards ensuring access to toilets and hygiene in Pema Gatshel

The country achieved the title of being Open Defecation Free last year, which meant all homes and families had access to improved toilets and sanitation. The challenge now is to uphold this status. In Pema Gatshel, the local leaders are already at it and have identified a few ways to do so.

Today, all households in Pema Gatshel have access to toilet facilities. Even in the rural parts of the district, you will find that every home will have a pour-flush toilet.

Pema Gatshel achieved the target of improved toilet and sanitation last year along with 11 other districts. The target now is to make sure that this achievement is not set aside but that efforts are continued.

During a recent meeting, local leaders and health officials discussed this and identified three ways to ensure people have access to improved toilets.

“When people make plans to construct a new house, the drawings will need to include the toilets as well. The local leaders will have to inform the people about it. Then if there are people who genuinely cannot afford to construct toilets, the gewog office will help them out,” said Pema Dorji, the DT Chairperson.

“If a toilet does not have a water supply, it will be very problematic. So, to handle issues like this, we will form a committee that will look into addressing the problems. The committee will also provide any construction materials that are needed,” said Nanong Gup, Sonam Jamtsho.

The committee will consist of three members consisting of the Gewog Gup or Mangmi, one health staff and the chiwog Tshogpa.

There are close to 6,000 households in Pema Gatshel.

Thinley Dorji, Pema Gatshel

Edited by Yeshi Gyaltshen

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