Participants in the forum
Participants in the forum

Women push for increased WASH facilities in Upper East communities

Women at a day’s forum have called on the government and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to intensify efforts towards increasing the provision of water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) facilities in underserved communities in the Upper East Region.


They said the unavailability of WASH infrastructure in schools, health facilities and within communities continued to impede efforts over the years towards the eradication of sanitation-related infections.

Therefore, they have called for concerted interventions by key stakeholders towards increasing access to WASH facilities, to enable people living in especially hard-to-reach communities to live dignified lives.

International Women’s Day

They were speaking at an event organised by WaterAid Ghana, a WASH focused NGO, in commemoration of this year’s International Women’s Day celebration in Bolgatanga.

A total of 42 women drawn from the Kassena Nankana West and Bongo districts, as well as Kassena Nankana and Builsa North municipalities, took part in the event.

A participant, Rose Anabiolie Adzuik, from the Bilinsa community in the Builsa North Municipality, said it was unfortunate that some schools and health facilities did not have access to WASH facilities.

She noted that although a number of NGOs continued to channel resources towards the provision of such facilities, more needed to be done to bridge the gap so that residents could heave a sigh of relief.

She said “what is worrying is the fact that women and children are compelled to comb around every day and join long queues to fetch water for domestic and other economic activities,” adding, “it is totally unacceptable for women and girls to defecate in the open due to the lack of toilet facilities thereby losing their dignity”.

Unfortunate deaths

Another participant, Awaregya Janet Yogibania from Wuru in the Kassena Nankana Municipality, expressed concern that inadequate boreholes had led to the deaths of children in their attempt to fetch water from the Tono Dam.

Therefore, she pleaded with the government to as a matter of urgency, construct more boreholes to make them easily accessible by residents in the community, to save the lives of children who drown in the dam in their quest to draw water.

A resident of Anafobiisi in the Bongo District, Mary Atanga, raised the issue of high fluoride content in water in the area which continues to affect the health of the people in the district, saying “it is sad that due to the fluoride in the water, many residents both young and old have discoloured teeth, coupled with bone-related diseases.

“It is important for the government to take the water situation seriously and come up with pragmatic measures that will ensure that every borehole provided does not have high fluoride in the water,” she said.

New strategy

Sharing the rationale of the event, the acting Policy and Communications Manager, WaterAid Ghana, Aliu Fauzia, said it formed part of their new strategy of ensuring gender equality and provision of WASH facilities.

She noted that the forum provided a platform for the women to reflect on their challenges with the unavailability of WASH facilities, so that they come together to support as well as to be at the forefront in campaigns towards the provision of such facilities. 

Writer’s email: [email protected]

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