Tokontanitsara-bas School, Madagascar Ernest Randriarimalala, WaterAid’s Communications Officer in Madagascar, sends an update from Tokontanitsara-bas School, where pupils and teachers are delighted with the new water facilities. Before work started at Tokontanitsara-bas School, teachers and pupils had no clean water to drink, nowhere to go to the toilet and no way of cleaning their hands. This made them sick and drastically affected their motivation to learn and teach in the school. But on my last visit to this school, things were totally different. Teachers and pupils were waiting for me and really excited to show me their brand new toilets and waterpoints. The waterpoint at Tokotanitsara-bas uses a gravity-fed water system. The water is sourced from a naturally occurring mountain spring that is then transported by the force of gravity to the school and other nearby communities. Joy and happiness It was great to see how just happy both the pupils and teachers are. Teachers told me that having running water and safe toilets is motivating them to stay at the school. Pupils were playing in the playground of the school and drinking and washing their faces at the school’s waterpoints. Photo:WaterAid/Ernest Randriarimalala “Since we have had safe water, toilets and a shower, we have no worries or cares anymore,” says 12-year-old Rojo, a pupil at the school. More time for school The new waterpoints and toilets have help pupils focus more on their studies as they no longer have to spend time fetching dirty water every day. “For me, having water means no longer being tired, being able to drink at any time and having more time to do other activities in school and at home,” says 12-year-old Nambinina. Photo:WaterAid/Ernest Randriarimalala Because water is now available, the children have also decided to plant a school garden. They’ve even sold some of their vegetables like cucumbers and green beans, and using the money to maintain the new toilet block with the support of a trained local technician. By choosing to support WaterAid’s work through the Schools Linking project, you will be helping more communities like this. Your kindness makes all the difference in the world – thank you.