Hisken Desire is an 18 year old student at the National School in Archaie. He lives with his sister, Monique, as they have lost both their parents. He is known by his peers to be very intelligent and wise. Last November, a group of parents and teachers collaborated to participate in the WASH in the Schools program to learn about proper sanitation and hygiene practices. They recognized that proper hygiene is not just an individual responsibility, but a collective one that impacts not only the health of their children, but their entire community.
One day, the school Principal along with the committee nicknamed “Friends of Hygiene Committee ” and an Animator from Haiti Outreach spoke to the students about the importance of having clean water for consumption and proper sanitation and hygiene practices.
Hisken shared, “Before Haiti Outreach delivered the WASH in Public Schools training program, I had thought sanitation was simply the principal’s responsibility. Prior to this program, the school yard was really dirty and there was no designated place for us to wash our hands. Most students had no understanding of the importance of proper hygiene at school.”
The presentation had a strong impact on Hisken and he decided to join the “Friends of Hygiene ” to help ensure that his school was clean and hygienic for all. He assisted the committee as they created the management and budgetary plan to ensure that the school would have enough financial resources to provide the necessary hygienic supplies for staff and students, such as: a designated washing station with safe water, designated latines to prevent open-air defecation, toilet paper, sanitary napkins for the women, and trash receptacles for waste. Now, each parent contributes 500 Haitian Gourdes annually to ensure a clean and hygienic environment in the school is maintained.
Hisken shared, “Thanks to this WASH in the Schools program that was delivered by Haiti Outreach, all students and staff ensure that all of the classrooms are kept clean, there are fixed washing stations with water and soap, and the bathrooms are always stocked with toilet paper. I feel proud to be treasurer of this committee!”