5.9.4 Strategies for assessing and improving institutional hygiene
You need to understand the methods and tools for improving the hygiene conditions in public and private institutions. Here are some of them.
Designing the plan of action
You should have a plan of action that covers at least one year. The plan should indicate the list of activities in one column and the time in the second column (see Table 5.2). Note that the activities and time intervals in Table 5.2 are suggestions. You will need to devise your own schedule. The plan of action should be approved by the local authority or your supervisor so that they are aware of it. The local authority can provide you with better assistance if you involve them.
Table 5.2 Annual plan of action for assessing and improving institutional hygiene
|No.||Activity||Time frame (suggested)|
|1||Identify categories and number of public institutions||At the beginning of the year (specify the time)|
|2||Prepare survey tools||(specify the time)|
|3||Visit/inspect public institutions||Monthly|
|4||Provide a feedback report to visited institutions||Immediately after the visit|
|5||Discuss the findings with local authorities||Monthly|
|6||Hygiene education to students||Monthly|
|7||Discuss the main findings with the local government officials||Monthly|
|8||Check personal hygiene of students||Every week on Mondays|
|9||Discuss the hygiene status of religious institutions with the church and mosque leaders||At the beginning of the year (specify the time)|
|10||Call and address a general meeting in order to discuss the annual performance and get feedback from the stakeholders||Towards the end of the year|
|12||Mobilise resources||Whenever needed|
Advocacy and public education
The enforcement of hygiene requirements is challenging. If a school has no latrine and you advise the school head to install latrines for students, thhe cannot do it immediately. They need time and a budget. In this case, you should emphasise the importance of latrines and encourage them to make the necessary budget allocation. You can also discuss the issue in the formal meetings which involve the local authorities. There are activities that do not require many resources. These are, for example, the establishment of hygiene/health clubs, hygiene education for students, and conducting personal hygiene inspections periodically.
Improving hygiene and sanitation services
Hygiene education and creating awareness are useful for the provision of information, but improvement of hygiene also needs facilities. The construction of latrines and safe water sources must be highlighted even if there are resource constraints. Just be aware that the provision of hardware, such as latrines, requires time and resources.
Inspection of public institutions
Inspection is a tool to identify problems, as described in Section 5.9.2, but it is also a means to design strategies for improvement. You need to make regular visits to each local public institution, at least once a year, using a checklist or a questionnaire that enables you to collect data, similar to the checklist for schools in Table 5.1. You should inform the owners or people responsible for the institution that you want to visit them at a specified date and time. Be transparent and genuine when inspecting to show that you want to help the institution to attain proper hygiene and not to criticise or fine them. You should give advice to the owners for improvement. You need to report to the kebele administrator for any sanitary violations that require enforcement.