- Title: Haiti's Scouts set up mobile wash sinks to ward off coronavirus
- Date: 24th March 2020
- Summary: PORT-AU-PRINCE, HAITI (RECENT) (REUTERS) MEMBER OF BOY SCOUTS EXPLAINING HOW TO WASH HANDS VARIOUS, MAN WASHING HANDS AS SCOUT WATCHES BOY SCOUT CARRYING BUCKET OF WATER VARIOUS OF BOY SCOUT FILLING A CONTAINER WITH WATER (SOUNDBITE) (Creole) HAITI BOY SCOUT MEMBER, EMMANUEL PAUL, SAYING: "Every person who passes by is invited to wash their hands and that person has to invite others to do the same thing. To these people, I say that before receiving a person in their home, the guest must wash their hand. To the students, I say that they must sensitize the heads of their schools so that they install a stall to wash their hands. To business managers, we say the same thing. " MEMBER OF BOY SCOUTS EXPLAINING HOW TO WASH HANDS BOY SCOUT PUMPING WATER BOY SCOUT LOGO VARIOUS, CHILDREN WASHING HANDS AS SCOUT WATCHES (SOUNDBITE) (Creole) HAITIAN STUDENT, EDDY JOSEPH, SAYING: "I washed my hands because it is very important for the coronavirus that is spreading in the world. It is very necessary that each wash their hands, not only when I go to bathe, before eating, when getting out of bed, before go put, after having touched a thing, it is necessary to wash their hands." VARIOUS, SIGNS EXPLAINING HOW TO PREVENT CORONAVIRUS SPREAD (SOUNDBITE) (Creole) LOCAL RESIDENT, YVENSON METELLUS, SAYING: "I have no confidence in the government because in Haiti the government is made up of negligent people. Infected people should be tested at the airport to protect us. I am very concerned because we have no confidence in the leaders. As we know it is a poor country. We are not able to protect ourselves. " VARIOUS, SIGNS EXPLAINING HOW TO PREVENT CORONAVIRUS SPREAD
- Embargoed: 7th April 2020 13:38
- Keywords: Boy Scouts COVID-19 hand-washing hygiene
- Location: PORT-AU-PRINCE, HAITI
- City: PORT-AU-PRINCE, HAITI
- Country: Haiti
- Topics: Health/Medicine
- Reuters ID: LVA001C6ETC1Z
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: In impoverished Haiti, where access to clean water is tricky and education is lacking, Boy and Girl Scouts are taking to the streets with portable sinks to allow passersby to wash their hands and teach them the importance of doing so to ward off the novel coronavirus.
Haitians are anxious their densely populated nation, the poorest country in the Americas, could be especially hard hit by the highly infectious disease given the lack of sanitation infrastructure and already overwhelmed healthcare services.
While it was one of the last Caribbean nations to remain coronavirus-free, authorities last week declared a state of emergency, closing Haiti's borders to people and shuttering schools and places of worship after detecting the first two cases of infection.
Sporting beige uniforms and colorful neckerchiefs, the Scouts started positioning themselves two weeks ago in dozens of locations on street corners around the capital with portable wash sinks that they either connect to the water supply of a local school, church or business, or simple bucket of water.
To draw passerby in, they blare from loudspeakers a catchy song by Haitian singer Jean Jean Roosevelt drawing on afrobeats and motivating people to adopt hygiene mantras advocated by health authorities across the world to tackle the outbreak.
Even with the best intentions though, most Haitians do not have running water or their own tanks and have to buy it or, if they cannot afford that, use springs where the water is often contaminated.
The difficult access to clean water fostered the nine-year cholera outbreak Haiti is only just recovering from that the United Nations said killed nearly 10,000.
For these Haitians, the stations are all the more welcome.
"I washed my hands because it is very important for the coronavirus that is spreading in the world. It is very necessary that each wash their hands, not only when I go to bathe, before eating, when getting out of bed, before go put, after having touched a thing, it is necessary to wash their hands," said student Eddy Joseph.
(Production: Robenson Sanon)
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