Mzuzu University (Mzuni) students on Sunday demonstrated water and sanitation technologies to people of Chiphazi Village in Traditional Authority Mkumbira in Nkhata Bay as one way of promoting good health among communities.
The technologies included slow sand filter which involves purification of rainwater using locally available resources such as charcoal, sand and stones.
Mzuni Department of Water and Sanitation student Lazarus Kazembe, who is also the university’s Society of Water and Sanitation Scientists (Swass) president, said the outreach programme was ideal for students to understand the challenges faced by communities as regards water and sanitation.
“Much as Swass could be better-placed to find solutions to sanitation and hygiene problems, communities are equally important in providing vital information and ideas to complement such solutions,” he said.
Group village head (GVH) Chiphazi said he was excited to learn various technologies from Swass, including the use of slow sand filter for purification of rainwater.
He said most villagers did not know that such water contains germs.
“The outreach programme was vital for my community as it has no piped water; hence, its dependence on less clean sources of water,” said GVH Chiphazi
He then urged his subjects to make good use of the knowledge gained for their own good health and socio-economic development.
Mzuni water and sanitation associate lecturer Arthur Nyasulu said lack of mindset change is a major setback in the promotion of sanitation and hygiene.
He, therefore, urged government to promote sanitation and hygiene lessons in primary schools for citizens to grasp the issues better at an early stage.
Swass also donated soap and buckets to the community during the exercise.