CAPACITY DEVELOPMENT: OUR TRAININGS AND WORKSHOPS
Each of the communities we are working in is benefitting from a range of trainings and workshops that help strengthening the local capacity to prevent health issues, facilitate learning, promote human rights, generate income, and care for the environment. After completing the training, participants are asked to share their new knowledge within their community. In this way, the training objectives are multiplied and enhanced.
Key topics typically include:
- Hygiene and Health Care
- Teacher Trainings
- Trainings for Savings and Loans Groups
- Agricultural Techniques
- Natural Resource Management
- Women’s and Children’s Rights
- Literacy Classes
Sanitation: a key strategy for better health
Many people in Mugu are not aware of the connection between sanitation and health issues. Open defecation is widely practised and only very few households have an improved sanitation status. Therefore, to prevent waterborne diseases, such as typhus, cholera, diarrhoea, and malnutrition, Back to Life promotes proper sanitation and hygiene behaviours in Mugu. Especially hand-washing, dental care, safe management of drinking water, and hygienic preparation of meals are in the focus of our health education and behaviour change promotion. As toilets can be very hard to afford for the poor families, Back to Life has also supported the construction of toilets in many villages of Mugu.
Rural Savings and Loan Groups
Back to Life has set up Savings and Loan Groups in the villages, in which each household is represented by one person. Especially, women are encouraged to participate. Gradually, the groups learn about the concept of saving money, taking loans, and household budgeting. They also learn to organise the group meetings independently, recording savings and loans by each member and transactions within the group.
Once a capital stock has been saved, usually after one or two years, loans can be negotiated within the groups. These micro credits are granted in consultation with every member and provided at a low interest rate. This ensures a high level of accountability and sustainability of the group. Households who borrow money often use it to repair their homes or invest in their livelihoods. Our experience shows, even in the harsh living conditions in Mugu – given a little support – families are able to accumulate a small but very important capital stock.
Savings groups can even transform into a state-approved micro bank. Doing so, one of the village communities has been able to fund the construction of a well all by themselves – a remarkable step into independency.