Margibi County – Twelve Communities in Kakata District, Margibi County have been declared Open Defecation Free (ODF) by the Christian Faith based charity, Living Water International.
Under the Community Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) Initiative, 15 communities were selected by the charity for the process, but only 12 of the fifteen were successful to receive the ODF status.
As part of the process, locals are encouraged to keep their environment clean and healthy through the process of building their own toilets, dish rocks, cloth lines and garbage bins, among others.
Making remarks during the ODF celebration over the weekend in Margibi county, the Paramount Chief of Kakata District , Fahn Lepolue commended Living Water International for the Initiative in the District.
Paramount Chief Lepolue urged residents in the twelve communities to ensure that they maintain their Open Defecation Free status.
He said fines are awaiting individuals and communities that will be caught carrying on acts contrary to their ODF status.
The County Inspector, Tarh Sackie said the citizens of Margibi County are grateful for engagements of Living Water International with citizens benefiting from Community Led Total Sanitation Initiatives.
Mr. Sackie said his office will work along with the communities to ensure sustainability and remain open defecation free.
He emphasized the need for residents of the twelve communities to make use of facilities constructed by them through Community Led Total Sanitation (CLTS).
The County Inspector warned the communities to manage the hand pumps, toilets and continue to keep their communities clean and healthy.
Mr. Sackie praised the 12 communities for embracing the Community Led Total Sanitation Initiative carried to their areas by Living Water International.
Providing an overview of Community Led Total Sanitation in Liberia, CLTS Field Officer at the Ministry of Health, Henry Kiatamba said the program introduced by government is intended to create a platform through which a safe environment can be developed.
Mr. Kiatamba indicated that the initiative was introduced by the government to educate locals about the importance of living in a clean environment and things that are associated with a filthy environment.
He commended the 12 communities for embracing CLTS practices and urged them to continue with such good practices in their respective communities.
He also commanded Living Water International for its continuous contributions to Liberia and the WASH sector, and encouraged others to emulate the good example.
For his part , the Country Director of Living Water International, Austin Nyaplue informed citizens and well-wishers attending the program that development is a collective effort.
Mr. Nyaplue said development will become progressive when the citizens of Liberia take ownership of the process.
He said the CLTS Initiative is a way of developing the towns that obtained ODF status.
The Country Director of the faith based organization disclosed that the dream of his entity is to see Liberia declared open defecation free.
He encouraged residents to maintain the facilities constructed by them and his organization.
As an entity, Mr. Nyaplue said it is interested in feeling and seeing the impact of its initiative in the county.
He said when towns that are declared ODF continue to maintain their status, it will immensely contribute to a good health status in the respective communities.
The Christian Faith based Boss told locals that his organization remains committed to continue with efforts of the government of Liberia and partners in providing safe drinking water, improved sanitation and hygiene.
Living Water International since 2013 has managed to work with 44 communities using the CLTS method.
The charity has facilitated 35 communities to obtain the status of Open Defecation Free in Kakata and Gibi Districts, Margibi County.