The India Post, Chnadigarh, July, 22 :To observe ‘International Year of Sanitation’, Yuvsatta & Govt. Model High School (TM), Sector 26 with support of Gandhi Smriti & Darshan Samiti, New Delhi started a ‘Sanitation Week’, in the School campus from July 21 to July 26, 2008. Today Mrs. Khuswinder Sharma, DEO,Education Department, Chandigarh Administration inaugurated the workshop.
Addressing the students Mrs. Khuswinder Sharma emphasized that factors related to water, sanitation and hygiene affect children’s right to education in many ways. In an atmosphere of poor health, children are unable to fulfil their education potential. She further said that Schools can also be a key factor for initiating change by helping to develop useful lifeskills on health and hygiene. Children are often eager to learn and willing to absorb new ideas. New hygiene behaviour learned at school can lead to life-long positive habits. In which Teachers can function as role models.
Mrs. Khuswinder Sharma also said that Hand washing is by far the best way to prevent germs from spreading and to keep your children from getting sick and she asked teachers to see to it that students wash their hands before taking mid-day meals in the School.
Giving information about the initiative Mr. Parmod Sharma, Coordinator, Yuvsatta said that the Year 2008 is the International Year of Sanitation. It is an opportunity to strengthen the sanitation initiatives, if it ensures participation of children in the programme that will really make it more robust and creative. The Gandhian philosophy on sanitation will particularly enrich the programme. In the ongoing workshop on Sanitation volunteers of Yuvsatta will involve students in Shramdan for cleanliness, ‘A hand-washing campaign’, Painting, Poster, Slogan writing, short stories, elocution contests will also be organized. A newspaper will also be prepared on the theme of Sanitation for all by the students involved in the programme to spread the message to masses at large.
Sharing her concerns Mrs. Purnima Vats, Principal of the School said that lack of sanitation is one of the single biggest challenges facing the world today. Each year, diarrhoea alone kills over 500,000 people in India and is presently posing a problem in this tricity as well. She also said that she will encourage Teachers to reinforce discussions by practical demonstrations, repetition of messages during prayer sessions and sport events, on-the-spot correction of unsanitary practices and stimulating the use of sanitary facilities such as latrines and garbage bins.
Around 1000 students of the School are expected to participate in various contests on the theme of Sanitation to be organized in this week-long workshop. And 151 prizes are also kept to encourage students and teachers involved in the programme, Shri SK Setia, DPI (Schools) will honour these outstanding students on July 26, 2008. To raise awareness in the people, especially youngsters-the generation next, Gandhi Smriti & Darshan Samiti, New Delhi is supporting organisation of such summer workshops all over the country..
l UNO has declared Year 2008 as International Year of Sanitation.
l 2.6 billion people or nearly half of humanity, almost 20% of which is in India, lives without access to adequate sanitation facilities.
l Every day diarrhoea alone kills over 1000 children in India.
l Washing hands with soap or ash at critical times can reduce the number of diarrhoeal cases by 47 per cent and reduce acute respiratory illnesses by 50 per cent.
l In recent days more then 100 cases of diarrhoea are identified in the tricity, majority being children.
l With teachers as role models, School students can become Agents of Change.