Providing solutions to multiple issues in one practical intervention is the kind of efficient project that Watershed loves. Our “WASHpad” project has been repeated in many problematic areas around Moria camp and follows a simple concept that can be easily replicated in a diversity of contexts.
Firstly, we identify an area in which people naturally carry out tasks; such as hand washing, laundry or cleaning pots and kitchen utensils. Sometimes an existing water source is there, but without proper drainage, leading to an accumulation of surface water and an unhygienic environment. So, in order to overcome stagnant water and increase freshwater access, while effectively addressing the grey water produced in areas where there is a logical need, we aim to install a WASHpad.
A “WASHpad” is the name we have given to our custom designed slabs of concrete that are gently sloped towards a central floor drain with a number of freshwater taps installed on a surrounding brick wall. Wash pads are multipurpose, easy to maintain outdoor WASH facilities for domestic activities such as washing clothes, cleaning dishes, preparing food, personal hygiene and sometimes ritual washing.
In some of our WASHpad locations, we have added supplementary facilities, such as showers, privacy curtains and sinks. All of the plumbing involved is easily accessible, should there be the need for repair. The wide gulley style floor drain means that blockages are easily fixable in case any food waste gets stuck, although they are usually avoidable with regular cleaning. Deep cleans are simple and effortless with the use of a pressure washer. In exposed locations, we’ve installed durable structures to shelter the users from wet weather or the hot sun.
In Moria camp, over the course of nearly three years, we installed a total of 16 WASHpads. We witnessed how this practical solution transformed damp, mosquito-ridden areas into busy community hubs; where people’s needs were catered for and residents could hygienically carry out their chores.