Starting Monday 8th April, 57 enumerators have embarked on a mission to carry out a survey on water, women and people with disability in Luganville. This means they will be visiting every single household.

After completing Luganville, the survey enumerators will go to every household in every village across SANMA and TORBA provinces.

The data collected from this survey which will target a total population of 64,000 people in the two provinces, will provide the baseline for World Vision’s 5 year Laetem Dak Kona (LDK) project.

It aims to empower women, young girls and people living with disability with a platform and space to self-advocate for their own WASH needs, as well as to strengthen the current referral system of accessing assistive devices.

The survey was endorsed by the Ministry of Justice and Community Services, designed in consultation with the Vanuatu National Statistics Office (VNSO), and in collaboration with the London School of Tropical Hygiene and Medicine (LSTHM), VSPD and VDP.

The VNSO provided the expertise, model and experience for the assessment, whilst the LSTHM provided the technical support for the tablet based data collection itself. Through this modality and adequate IT support, World Vision staff will be able to instantly capture, store, transfer and analyse data collected on a daily basis.

At the opening of the enumerators training on March 25th at the Chiefs Nakamal in Luganville, Knox Lanny, on behalf of the Ministry of Justice and Community Services (MOJCS), said, “I am excited about this project because Laetem Dak Kona seeks to support The Disability Inclusive Development Policy launched by the MOJCS in September 2018.

“The policy covers eight strategic priority areas with a strong focus in mainstreaming the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, Disability Specific Services, Disability Statistics, Accessibility and Women and Girls with Disabilities.”

In the presence of enumerators, chiefs, provincial leaders and other community leaders, outgoing World Vision Vanuatu Country Director, Mike Wolfe said of Disabled Peoples Organisations, “Thank you so much for helping us to better understand the real challenges people face.

“The enumerators may be our arms and legs, and you are our heart and soul,” then he went on to add to all who were present, “It’s also the first time a survey like this has ever been done in the Pacific…with everyone’s help we can complete the Water, Women, and Disability survey, and it will be a huge success.”

The data from the survey, which will target each person in each household from the age of 5 upwards, will not only be used for the project but it will also be made available to all relevant government and non-government stakeholders involved in WASH, Health, Disability Inclusion and Gender.

To put emphasis on highlighting the ability of a person rather than focusing on their disabilities, about 20 percent of the enumerators who were employed from within the two provinces of SANMA and TORBA, are people with disabilities.

Job, who is an enumerator from the Banks, said, “I live with a disability and I am glad that LDK is practicing what they preach by employing people with disabilities to do survey work.

“Many times our disabilities are highlighted but it is not often that people look to our abilities.”

The project is funded by the Australian government through the Water for Women Fund, and also private donations to World Vision Australia.