Summary of Study Session 4

In Study Session 4, you have learned that:

  1. Healthful housing can be defined as the physical structure that people use for shelter and the environs of that structure, including all necessary services, facilities, equipment and devices needed or desired for the physical, mental and social wellbeing of the family and individual. This definition makes a good link between the physical nature of the housing and the goal of health.
  2. There are four basic requirements for housing: satisfying physiological needs, protection against infections, protection against accidents, and satisfying psychological and social needs.
  3. The implementation of all housing requirements is challenging. Listing all housing problems, testing them for their feasibility and discussing the priorities with the community and local community are important in order to design housing improvement strategies in your locality.
  4. The dimension and size of a housing unit depends on satisfying the four basic requirements of housing. In addition, the local situation (economy, culture, willingness) should be considered for the implementation of housing improvements. However, there are some facilities that should not be compromised: latrine, separate kitchen, separate animal sheds, facilities for waste management and personal hygiene, and the presence of windows.
  5. Model houses are a starting point for the implementation of new housing and improving existing housing. You need to evaluate the benefits of model houses and use the evidence to mobilise other residents who are not involved in model housing.
  6. The kitchen should not be a source of indoor air pollution. The use of an improved stove with a chimney should be encouraged.
  7. Your role in the provision of healthful housing must be clear. You are the advocator and communicator of appropriate information and advice. The model house owners, elders and local government staff are your partners in the work towards a healthful housing programme.

4.7.4  Strategies for housing improvements

Self-Assessment Questions (SAQs) for Study Session 4