Stories of Change

Pann Sreytouch keeps her latrine clean.

CWS programs in Cambodia reached 21,373 individuals in 83 communities last year.

Source: CWS Annual Report 2017

A new toilet (and inspiration for their neighbors!) with an assist from CWS

Pann Sreytouch, 23, lives with her husband, Doeun Tith, 25, and their two-year-old daughter in Teuk Kraham village in northern Cambodia. They are farmers with a small land plot where they grow rice, cassava, eggplant, citronella and basil. They sell the cassava locally for about $450 per season, and the other crops they keep for family use. Despite some earnings, the family is still poor. CWS team members began to work with the family last year to consider and pursue their goals.

Among other things, Touch and Tith joined CWS-led awareness and education sessions to learn about water safety, better personal hygiene and improved sanitation. After learning more about the importance of sanitary latrines and good hygiene, they were inspired to build their own toilet – with a little help from their new friends at CWS. With some material and technical help from CWS, including expert advice to be sure the septic tanks were properly set, and with about $140 of their own money for good quality walls and a tin roof, the family also made sure to learn how to safely empty the septic tank as needed. Now, Tith says, “I am so happy with the toilet!” We don’t go use the field as our toilet anymore; and “the health of my family is better.”

Neighbors are also stopping by to use the toilet, which the family is happy to share. “My neighbors have come to see how [our latrine] works and now they plan to build their own. I’m thankful to CWS for their support, and can already see benefits for my family and the community”.