Walu International is dedicated to permanently improving hygiene and sanitation conditions in communities.
We believe in the fundamental dignity of all people, and that clean water and basic sanitation are an inherent human right. Our take on sanitation draws on community based development, which focuses on educating and empowering local populations to identify their own problems and come up with the most appropriate solutions.
Our methodology is to empower communities. We do this by creating community ownership and training committees so they will be equipped to lead.
Through educational lessons, meetings, and training our goal is to provide the community an opportunity to openly speak about problems they are facing and to discuss ways to resolve these problems using local resources.
Walu is building relationships with communities who want to improve their sanitation and hygiene conditions. We cannot train them without your help! Every time you use a toilet or have a glass of water, please consider helping those who do not have the same access to improved sources as you.Learn More
Please read the entries below to learn more about what Walu International is doing.Learn More
August 16, 2015 One of my favorite things to hear when working with a community is: “We can do this. We don’t need the foreigner.” This is music to my ears because the truth is once a community has been equipped to provide for themselves, they really don’t need a “foreigner” anymore. We are on the right track to hearing this in the Cuajachillo 2 community in Nicaragua! Pat arrived in Cuajachillo on June 1st. When he arrived, the eco latrine was a new concept for them to grasp. Our initial goal was to make sure they wanted a latrine, work with the community to form a committee, provide training, and maybe discuss latrine designs. We accomplished so much more! Things progressed quicker than we anticipated due to a high level of community ownership. This summer, Pat: 1) Facilitated community meetings 2) Created an environment for the community to choose a Committee to oversee the project 3) Worked with the community to choose a stakeholder for the eco latrine 4) Facilitated discussions with the community to brainstorm a monetary maintenance plan 5) Trained the community to construct their first eco latrine! Water is also an issue for the community due to the distance they have to travel to collect it in barrels. Common health issues and diseases they experience due to water and sanitation/hygiene issues include: Diarrheal Illnesses, Malaria, and Intestinal Worms. The top priorities the residents of Cuajachillo 2 identified to improve in their village were water and sanitation. We are committed to working with the community to improve their situation. Because we believe in community led projects...Read More
July 5, 2015 Over the years I (Cynthia) have met many types of people working in the non profit world. Every person posseses some sort of impressive quality ranging from enthusiastic to patient to insightful, but the one quality I believe brings success to a project is the ability to be a learner which isn’t as easy as it sounds. People working cross-culturally realize being a learner is necessary in order to get to know the culture and community we are working with, but many times I and others have faked it: nods, smiles, and thoughtful expressions to convey we are listening when in reality we are busy entertaining our own opinions. While experience and training are necessary, they can also hinder a person in the non profit world from being a learner because the tendency is to compare past expriences, theories, and case studies to the current situation we find ourselves in. We begin to analyze and compare past situations, forgetting that each situation is unique and that we need to be cautious to not jump to conclusions. Being a learner takes time. A learner will view conversations around a table drinking the local beverage as more valuable than making a premature plan. A learner will not view a day working in the garden as unproductive because the learner realizes he or she is gaining valuable information about the land, needs, and lifestyle of the community while working side by side with their “teacher”. As the community sees the non profit worker learning about their way of life, they will begin to trust the person and more personal...Read More
June 21, 2015 Pat is settled into Cuajachillo and is progressively learning valuable information about how they operate and what is important to them. They have identified that their main concerns are water and sanitation (specifically latrines). The image attached is one of the exercises we use called the Problem Tree which identifies areas of concern in the community. After problems are brought up, the cause of each problem is identified and listed in the root area. This is a simple way to learn about and discuss community problems and obstacles they are encountering. Later the community decides which area is of most concern to them and then decides whether or not they want to resolve the issue. In this case, the community confirmed their commitment to improving sanitation conditions. Pat will continue to facilitate community meetings. Our focus at this point is to provide education on sanitation/hygiene issues so the community is well aware of problems they are facing and long term solutions that are feasible to use. It is important that the community is well informed so they will be able to make make solid decisions that will affect them short and long term. We are eager to see further community...Read More
We bet there is. And if you get thirsty, is there a faucet where you can get some clean water? We hope so.
Lido village (PNG) has raised over US$14,000 to fund their own toilet project. Walu International needs your help to get our qualified volunteers over to Lido village to facilitate their toilet project. Our partnership with the International Development graduate program at Monterrey Institute of International Studies has enabled Walu International to have qualified personnel working on our projects. Walu International needs your help getting our qualified candidates to Papua New Guinea, “Give A Crap”.Make a donation today!