When our WASH teams begin working in a community, we don’t normally see impacts or outcomes until the fourth or fifth engagement. However, since we’ve started introducing Tippy Tap building demonstrations in our early trainings, we have found that some of the communities we work in begin erecting tippy taps on their own accord immediately after our first or second engagement with them.
Tippy Taps don’t cost much to create, they don’t use as much water as a running tap and can be setup anywhere making hand washing a more convenient and frequent exercise.
Navitilevu Village is one of 18 communities that Habitat for Humanity Fiji is working with as part of the Water for Women funded Strengthening community resilience and inclusion through
improved Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) services project. Between July and December every year the village faces water shortages, so water conservation has become part of daily life.
Osea Suka and his family are one of Habitat for Humanity’s project partners in Navitilevu Village. In Februrary – 2021, Osea and other villagers of Navitilevu completed a 3-day water, sanitation and hygiene training where they learnt about the benefits of Tippy Taps. Osea immediately went on to make 2 Tippy Taps after the training
“I found that it was a very simple design that I could easily build, and at home my kids love to use it and it encourages them to wash their hands frequently especially after playing outside” – Osea Suka
Namuniwaqa Village School is located just at the edge of Navitilevu and caters for students from a few villages in the area. Master Ovini Nawalu is a Teacher and WASH Officer at the school. After also undergoing some training with Habitat for Humanity Master Nawalu went back and began setting up Tippy Taps at the school.
“We’ve been facing a lot of water shortage as the school is the last place to receive water from the village water catchment. That was the motivation for me to come and engrave in the students the importance of washing their hands and at the same time conserving water.” Master Nawalu also mentioned how the kids enjoy using the Tippy Taps and are always asking him to set it up for them.
Most villages across Fiji have running piped water from a local catchment, however taps might be shared among a few households and are sometimes located quite far from the house. For some villages, common areas like halls and meeting spaces may not have taps nearby. Tippy Taps have become a solution for these situations. The Community health worker of Navitilevu Village – Rasilivia Navo says: “It’s easy for people to use and even for us women, we’ve asked our youths to install tippy taps for our homes. For me, our bathroom and sanitation facilities is located quite a distance, so I find that the tippy tap helps and encourages frequent hand washing.”
The first version of the Tippy Tap was created by Dr. Jim Watt of the Salvation Army in Chiweshe, Zimbabwe.