Sanitation Studies

Today, Year 6 at Liss Junior School started the sanitation study unit at school. Firstly, we discussed what sanitation means and came up with the following definition,

‘The systems for taking dirty water and other waste products away from buildings in order to protect people’s health’

We also learned what the acronym WASH means: water, sanitation and hygiene .

Next , we thought about how we take our access to water for granted and talked about a scenario:

As people living in the UK, we have access to safe drinking water. It’s a part of our everyday lives. Running water allows us to shower in the morning, water the lawn in the afternoon, cook dinner in the evening, and keep hydrated throughout the day. Imagine now, if you can, that there is no running water. What would you do? What if you had to fetch water every morning, walking five kilometres each way, and waiting in line at the pump for half an hour? How would this change your lives?

The children had a few minutes to think about this and put their thoughts down on post – its. The photo below shows some of their responses

The children’s responses to the scenario.

The children were able to identify that life would become far more difficult and that their free time would be severely diminished. Mr Stanley told the class about his experiences of fetching water from the crater lake at Kafuro and how tiring it is particularly at the high altitude. The children realised that the work they had put in over the last few years to enable Kafuro to have clean toilets and running water has made a huge difference.

The second part of the session looked at the differences between girls and boys when it comes to sanitation. The poster below shows how poor sanitation affects girls far more severely than boys.

The children were tasked with coming up with a plan to address this. We will share our plans with Mr Thembo when he comes to the UK (hopefully) in March.

Next week, the children are going to learn how to build tippy taps.

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Changing Communities: Building starts in Liss

Blog readers will know that one of the major topics that Liss, Kafuro, Hambledon and Rihamu have been studying is how our communities are changing and what the impact will be on the people and services in each community.

This week in Liss, the first phase of building new houses has started on Andlers Ash Road, which is a five minute walk away from the school. The houses will be built on the site of a former tree nursery. Seventy-seven new houses are being built in the first phase and this should have some impact on the village. As well as welcoming new people into our community, it should mean that there will be new arrivals at the school as new children join when they move into the area. There should also be a greater demand on local services and an opportunity for local businesses to generate more income.

We will post new photos each week as the building work progresses.

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Christmas greetings from Liss Junior School

Merry Christmas to all our friends at Kafuro Primary School and to all the twinned schools in the UK and Uganda. At Liss, we had our carol service yesterday where we read the story of the nativity and sang Christmas carols. We send to all of our friends our best wishes and the message of hope given through the birth of Jesus Christ.

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Pizza sale with Liss tomatoes

On Friday, Rowan Class pupils at Liss held a pizza sale using many of the tomatoes tthat last year’s Rowan Class had grown in the bottle greenhouse. Mr Stanley cooked down the tomatoes and added onion before blitzing it into a sauce. He then made a pizza dough and cooked pizzas in the cob oven. The children quickly sold out of the pizzas on the layground but not before raising £30 (150,000UGX) towards completing the new classroom at Kafuro.

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Discussing dilemmas for UK and Uganda

Last week, Year 6 pupils in Liss had their last lesson where we looked at rights and responsibilities. Firstly, we looked at the role of rights bearers, the people who make sure that rights are enforced. For example, if a child has the right to a tidy classroom, but a responsibility to ensure that they keep it tidy, then the rights bearer has to ensure that a classroom is provided in the first place,

After this we discussed dilemmas that may make us think carefully about rights. The children were asked to discuss one of two dilemmas:

Have the government the right to impose a ban on junk food for all school dinners in the UK?

Should parents be able to take children out of school to support their parents in the field at harvest time in Uganda?

Both questions generated some fierce debate. The children had to choose one of the two questions to answer while working as a pair. Here are a couple of their answers:

Holly and Leila

Junk food in schools shouldn’t be banned as if it was banne dthen our rights are being denied. If we eat too much junk food then that’s our fault and we would have to deal with the consequences. If junk food was banned then the children/adults who are sensible eaters wouldn’t be able to have a break once in a while from healthy choices. It isn’t ok to eat loads of junk food, but it still shouldn’t be tajken away from us. We should be able to make our own choices and if our choice is to eat lots of junk food then that’s our own fault.

On the other hand, junk food should be banned as too many people are overweight at a young age. If we can’t control our diet then we should get as much help as we can. Other places can supply a treat for those who eat well, so it’s good for everyone. If there was too much unhealthy food on menus, people would most likely choose it over healthy options. Some people eat a lot of junk food outside of school so why not ban it inside school so we can convince them to be healthy.

We don’t think junk food should be banned as that would deny our rights to eat freely without being told what to eat. We should be able to control and convince ourselves to eat healthily, and if we can’t we deserve the consequences of being overweight. If unhelathy food was banned, it’s likely less people would get school dinners as it wouldn’t be something to look forward to, like a treat for healthy eaters. It’s our responsibility to stay healthy and we should only treat ourselves once in a while.

Levi and Isaac

We think that children should be banned from working in the fiels as it will ruin the education of most children in Kafuro. If they don’t go to school then they will most likely not pass their end of year exams. Therefore the only job they will ever have will be in the fields.

On the other hand, we think that children shouldn’t be banned from helping their parents because if the school was worried about children working in the field s during harvest then they should just change the term dates and that problem would be solved.

In conclusion, the right of any child in Kafuro is to have a good education, but they have a responsibility to access it.

We asked Yowasi whether it was possible for Ugandan schools to change ter dates to fit in with harvests. Yowasi told us that schools do not have the power to do this and the Ministry of Education in Uganda sets the term dates. He added that the start of the rainy season has been so inconsistent in recent years that even if the dates changed there would be no guarantee that they would get them right.

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