During my university holidays I work with MSABI as an intern and a facilitator for Community Education Programme. The programme comprises education to primary schools and community members through Drama, education through Slides and mobilization, all of these have been conducted throughout the Kilombero District. The next stages of the programme are second round activities in existing areas and to extend to the neighbouring Ulanga District where people having the same problems of safe water access and poor hygiene.
The programme raises awareness and enables people to have access to safe and clean water as well as being aware of household water treatment and good hygiene practices. Now the programme has paused due to the rainy season so we are waiting the dry season to continue with the work. We Are using this time to prepare plans.
The focus of my studies at university is that of Gender relating to Community Development. I have previously prepared university coursework using MSABI as a case study looking at the waysthe organisation interacts with gender. The objective of this study was to assess the contribution of MSABI in the improvement of womens welfare particularly in Ifakara. Women and children are primarily responsible for fetching water for household use, transporting it home storing it until it is used, and using it for cooking, cleaning, washing, and watering household animals. Also women in Kilombero District still carry out most of the agricultural work in addition to their traditional duties of looking for firewood and water (URT, 1997). Access to safe water is a key gender consideration.
MSABI considers the role of women in different activities particularly during project designing so as to make sure its activities are both equitable but also utilize women in their important roles within community and family. MSABI is community oriented and having the aim to empower women through having access to water.
On top of it’s intervention programmes MSABI also considers gender equality in it’s recruitment!
Joseph Kisala, pursuing BA in Gender and Community Development at Tengeru University, Arusha.