Combating a deadly menace: early experiences with a community-based arsenic mitigation project in Bangladesh
PublisherBRAC Research and Evaluation Division (RED)
Hossain, Md. Zabed
MetadataShow full item record
CitationChowdhury, A., Hossain, M. Z., Nickson, R., Rahman, M., Jakariya, M., & Shamimuddin, M. (2000, August). Combating a deadly menace: early experiences with a community-based arsenic mitigation project in Bangladesh. Research Reports (2000): Social Studies, Vol – XXVI, 259–266.
Bangladesh is facing the problem of arsenic poisoning in drinking water. Around 27% of the tubewells, which supply drinking water to most of the population, have arsenic concentrations above the government of Bangladesh limit of 50 t.g per litre. This means that a quarter of the • country's population is exposed to arsenic poisoning which is alarming and unprecedented in history. BRAC, a non-governmental organisation, in conjunction with the Department of Public Health Engineering (DPHE) of the government of Bangladesh and UNICEF, has implemented a project titled, 'Action Research into Community-Based Arsenic Mitigation' in two upazilas of Bangladesh - from June 1999 to June 2000. The aim of the project was to assess the technical viability as well as the effectiveness of different alternative safe water options and to figure out the community acceptance of such options. The activities included the determination of the extent of arsenic contamination in water of all the tubewells of the project area; involvement of community members in choosing, implementing and maintaining alternative sources for safe drinking water, determination of the viability and effectiveness of different mitigation option and assess their relative acceptance by villagers; identification of arsenic-affected patients and providing treatment; and make the community people aware of arsenic poisoning. This report presents the experiences of the initial course of project implementation.