Through projects funded by UNICEF and the European Union, the Healthy Home Model has been implemented in 16 municipalities of the states of Táchira, Mérida and Zulia with the aim of generating changes in behaviors and habits to benefit health, family and community life and coexistence and to protect the environment in the communities concerned.
The project trained 195 community promoters engaged in the work to improve hygiene practices and reduce health risks by addressing some key issues such as water quality, safe disposal of waste-matter, grey water and solid waste, hygiene and vector control at the household level.
Following the training, health professionals, teachers and active members of the community were commissioned to promote the model which benefited 503 families in the municipalities of Pedro María Ureña, Bolívar, Libertador, Lobatera, Sucre, Michelena, Córdoba, Andrés Bello, Jáuregui , Samuel Darío Maldonado, Fernández Feo, Panamericano and Ayacucho in Táchira, Alberto Adriani in Mérida and Colón in Zulia.
These interventions have led to a real transformation of the involved communities, not only thanks to the trainings, but also through the distribution of toolsand materials for the storage and filtration of water and personal hygiene products.
The strategy also included psychosocial assistance to families.
The empowerment, commitment, and responsibility of community promoters for the development of the activities were crucial to generate visible changes in people's lives, as were the receptivity of families, all well disposed towards the project and eager to improve their situation.
The promoters’ home visits helped the families identify opportunities to improve their homes’s health despite vulnerable conditions such as inadequate space distribution, overcrowding or the lack of plumbing, electricity, or domestic gas.
It was possible to promote permanent changes that improved space management, water quality and waste management, thus also improving relationships between family members.
“It was a wonderful experience. Families showed great interest in the topics covered. And the obvious changes in the family environment allow us to see the real impact of the project. Implementing the Healthy Home Model makes each person involved more empathetic, supportive, sensitive and truly human. Humanitarian work is essentially the inner working of mind, body, soul and heart that allows you to take care of each one starting from their own specific vulnerability. And receiving expressions of gratitude strengthens the spirit of those who do this beautiful work”.
Marco Roa, CISP community promoter.