In continuance of its efforts towards ensuring ‘Swacch Bharat’, Toyota Kirloskar Motor has conceptualized and implemented a unique CSR initiative, Project ABCD. The initiative is aimed at curbing one of the grave concerns faced by our country – open defecation. This project has reached out to 102 schools in 88 villages in Magadi, Kanakapura and Ramanagara. Toyota Kirloskar Motor has targeted 40 villages to become open defecation free in Karnataka and has been already successful in ensuring 100% sanitation in 14 villages within a year.
In the wake of the growing concerns around insufficient sanitation facilities in government schools and lack of adequate toilet training among school children and recognizing the need for a new approach, Toyota Kirloskar Motor initiated the ABCD project with a focus on bringing in a behavioral change. The Project ABCD (A Behavioral Change Demonstration) not only aims at achieving 100% school sanitation by increasing awareness, it also promotes dignity and privacy for the girl child by upgrading existing unhygienic school toilets to usable condition as well as to promote learning and retention among school children, teachers as well as the community members.
According to recent UNICEF Reports, open defecation is rampant in India. Around 595 million people, which is nearly half the population of India, defecate in open. This practice poses serious threat to the health of villagers in India like diarrhea and worm infections. India reports the highest number of deaths due to diarrhea in children under five in the world. Toyota Kirloskar Motor aims at enhancing school sanitation and ensuring sustainable hygienic condition in toilets with the ABCD project.
As per the school teachers, ABCD has tremendously contributed in reduction of school hour missing cases (earlier condition – adult girl children used to go to their home for toilet usage and miss the classes. Currently, owing to the Toyota Kirloskar Motor’s girl child sanitation initiatives and ABCD project implementation, school missing hours have reduced to zero.
The project has already been benchmarked by UNICEF and the Education Department for its commendable contribution in raising awareness on this grave issue. Toyota Kirloskar Motor has constructed 500 units of sanitation facilities of which 125 units are located in Varanasi, 250 units in Ramnagara district in Karnataka and 125 units in Vaishali in Bihar. Additionally 176 toilet units were constructed in Chennapattana taluk in Karnataka.