69-year-old KandanKarmakar and his wife were excited after the construction of their new toilet. Last summer, while defecating beside a pond, Kandan fell in, but luckily he was rescued and rushed to hospital, however doctors said that due to a sudden stroke his right hand and left leg was paralyzed.

Kandan now needed permanent support to walk and going to the toilet happens to be the most difficult task for a person who is paralyzed. The family badly needed a toilet. Bimala, Kandan’s wife expalined”I used to feel really ashamed and shy to relieve myself on the edge of the fields.” The problem of the Karmakar family was further intensified when one of their daughters was separated from her husband and returned to live with the Karmakar family along with her two kids. It has been difficult for them to survive on a meager and inconsistent income and due to open defecation, diarrhea and other diseases; the expenditure on medicine was an exacerbating factor.

The ERDS programme “Sanitation & Safe Drinking water for families living below the poverty line”, supported by MCC, acted positively and stepped in the help with this tragic situation by organizing the construction of a new toilet. Bimala and her family members were delighted to have the new amenities in their house and after a period of nearly seventy years KandanKarmakar is now using a toilet. They have been using it properly and have maintained it in a good hygienic condition. The latrine has not only provided a much better solution to a disabled person’s toileting needs, but has also enhanced and safeguarded the dignity and quality of life of the entire family.