Featured in The Times Of India

Trichy: Self-help group (SHG) women are rising up to the occasion and operating community toilets in the city despite the fear of Covid-19 spread.

The city has around 430 community toilets, a majority of them maintained by the She (Sanitation and Hygiene Education) teams comprising SHG women. By collecting a minimal user fee, the SHG women were maintaining the toilets. Located in the slums that do not have access to safe toilets, the community toilets despite being a paid one received the support of locals.

Initially, there was worry over the covid-19 spread and possible impact in the functioning of community toilets post the lockdown. City Wide Inclusive Sanitation (CWIS) project for which Trichy was selected as one of the four towns/cities in the country had provided the safety gears, disinfectants and sanitisers to the women maintaining 120 community toilets here. “We pitched in and provided the required safety gears. We instilled confidence in the SHG workers through sensitization drives,” Niladri Chakraborty, team lead, CWIS Trichy said. SHG women upon being provided with the safety gears displayed the courage to maintain the community toilets.

Maintaining social distancing and insisting the people to sanitize hands before and after using the toilets, the SHE teams continue to maintain the toilets everyday. “People are obeying our instructions. We will continue to use hand gloves and face mask,” Selva Mary, an SHG member from Krishnamoorthy Nagar said.