Knowledge transfer and competence building play a crucial role in our on-site activities. Without exception, all projects are accompanied by training courses and workshops, which have very different contents and objectives depending on the project. What they all have in common, however, is that they are indispensable for a sustainable improvement in local living conditions, because this is the only way to ensure that projects and their results are supported and further developed by local people in the long term.
The training contents are individually tailored to the goals of the project and the needs of the local people. However, some topics are recurrent:
Maintenance and repair of facilities
Construction projects in which wells are installed, for example, always go hand in hand with training courses in which the handling and maintenance of the equipment is taught.
What sounds obvious was unfortunately not a matter of course for a long time in the context of development projects. Far too often, the past has shown that well-intentioned projects have a very short lifespan if the knowledge of how to maintain and repair the equipment beyond the end of the project is not imparted in parallel.
To avoid such scenarios, our projects classically establish water committees in which locals take responsibility for the functionality and proper use of the facilities.
Resource use and ecological interrelationships
However, providing access to water and ensuring the long-term functionality of the water supply is only the first step. It is equally important to impart knowledge about how resources are used sustainably. For example, when it comes to irrigating gardens in the most economical way possible or protecting other natural resources such as forests. Here, short-term interests such as generating income through deforestation often conflict with long-term goals such as ensuring good soil and water quality through healthy forests. Training in this area serves to educate people about long-term connections between human actions and the environment and promotes an intrinsic interest in managing resources sustainably.
Hygiene and health
Diseases transmitted by contaminated water are one of the leading causes of death worldwide. Typhoid, cholera and other diarrheal diseases affect children in particular. This is not only due to the availability of clean water, but also to the lack of knowledge of the links between water, hygiene and health risks. Training on the topic of WASH (water – sanitation – hygiene) is therefore an important part of our projects. In particular, the focus is on working with children, who are taught not only knowledge but also concrete practices, such as how to wash their hands properly.