A safer place to go to school
29 January 2015

When we met Emma Malambo in Chobana village, Monze district, Zambia, she was busy gathering and breaking stones.  

The reason? Thanks to the incredible support of people like you, new toilets are being built at the village school. Now Emma has joined a group of local women helping with the construction – and even though it may sound like hard work, she couldn't be happier.

"We don't want our children to use the bush, where they can be bitten by snakes," Emma explained. "We want to see enough toilets here so that sanitation improves."

Emma Malambo of Chobana Village
Emma (left) shows off the stones the women have gathered to help the construction of the new toilets.

In the world's poorest communities, lack of access to safe water and clean toilets radically changes children's experiences of going to school.

Until now, Chobana School has had just six toilets for 240 girls and 235 boys. That means long queues at break time – which has inevitable consequences.

"When the toilets are busy the children can't wait and they rush into the bush to relieve themselves," School Manager Canisius Moonga told us.

This doesn’t just take the children away from school, forcing them to miss classes and playing with their friends. It also compromises their privacy, putting them at risk of animal attacks and – without a hygienic way to keep clean and wash their hands  – of diseases like dysentery and cholera.

Chobana Village participates in the construction of new school toilets
In Chobana village the whole community is supporting the work on the new school toilets.

With so much at stake, it's no wonder the whole community is keen to support our work and get involved with building the new toilets. And with the support of WaterAid and our local partner, NOCAD, they're also committed to improving hygiene in their own homes, too.

The result will be a new facility the school - and the whole community - can feel proud of, one that will give their children a real chance of a happier, healthier future. And it wouldn't have been possible without the support of people like you.

"Thank you to everyone who has donated," says Canisius. "We really appreciate your support."

Find out more about our work in Zambia >

This project has been made possible thanks to the generosity of our supporters, including players of People's Postcode Lottery.