Portland, Ore. – In Montero, an agricultural outpost in central Bolivia, Vibrant Village has invested $48,414 to improve hygiene and sanitation conditions. While the town has seen much growth in recent years, many of the exurbs remain under-developed.
Vibrant Village Foundation is teaming up with Seattle-based Etta Projects, a nonprofit active in Bolivia for 11 years. Etta Projects has supported nearly 62,000 people through water, sanitation, education, nutrition and health initiatives.
Thirty minutes from Montero’s center, the neighborhoods of 1 Octubre and Monte Cruz are home to approximately 1500 people. Etta Projects is working with these families, who live in modest, wood homes with simple, pit latrines. Many latrines have fallen into disrepair and routinely overflow during the rainy season, making the streets and low areas very unsanitary.
With support from Vibrant Village Foundation, Etta Projects and the local municipality are working to construct composting toilets, showers and laundry facilities for 100 families. “To address the problem of poor sanitation, Etta Projects does an amazing job of leveraging their success in these communities to gain local government buy-in,” says Kevin Grubb, Vibrant Village Foundation’s Program Director.
The goal of the project is to improve household hygiene and health through the use of latrines, grey water and garbage management, hand-washing and food preparation. To support this effort, Etta Projects will train 25 community leaders to educate their neighbors on improved hygiene and sanitation practices.
“It is very exciting to know that the children and the whole family are using the latrine correctly and that they are maintaining their latrine!” explains Edit, Etta Projects hygiene instructor.