TOILETS FOR TOMORROW

By Sofia

I remember the first time I step my foot on Maliangin island as a Community Liaison Officer. I was very excited to meet the inhabitants (community members). I have heard and read a lot about the island before I went there, and to my surprise I was amazed how this island has not become globally known as tourist destination. The island itself surrounded by crystal clear turquoise water. The island’s beach is a place for Green and Hawksbill turtles to lay their eggs while the other sea creatures living in the sea benefit from the coral reefs and seagrass thriving around the island. Dugong is one of the protected marine mammals that swim and graze seagrass around this island.

I was relieved that the villagers were very welcoming and friendly, and as curious as I was. Me and my team members had a long chat with one of the family, Musana family, who is the prominent family living on the island. We chatted about the community’s thoughts about their area being promoted as a model site to demonstrate how a marine protected area will operate within the proposed Tun Mustapha Park. They were very chatty especially when we mention about the prospect of the island being an eco-tourism destination. The conversation went smoothly and fruitful until one of the team member wanted to use the toilet, then we found out that none of the community members on the island have proper toilet. As this particular team member could not accept ‘doing it’ in the bush outside we have to hurry to the main island :D
Group photo with the villagers in Maliangin Island
That particular ‘unimportant’ incident initiated WWF-Malaysia effort to upgrade and build the necessary facilities crucial for eco-tourism on the island. After going through a series of necessary processes to get financial and written approval from the organization (WWF-Malaysia) and community of Maliangin, me and my team mates managed to organized the villagers of Maliangin to build 5 units of toilets and showers on the island.
Thanks to the dedicated community members of Maliangin island, five toilets and showers were completed within 51 days from June-July 2012. These toilets and showers offer the community access to desperately needed sanitation services as well as to cater for the tourists that have gradually increased since Maliangin Island being Being the first demonstration site, the island is important for the local community to show the ability to improve its socio-economic status as well.
Construction in progress


The inside of the toilet, squatting toilet with flush
  
Inside of shower room



One of the completed toilet and shower

This will be the first in a series of initiatives from the community in developing its community-based eco-tourism. When the eco-tourism programme starts generating income, the community will be able to improve its socio-economy status and to sustain motivation to look after the marine environment to ensure returning tourists.
The walls of these toilets and showers will be decorated with marine-themed murals by the villagers to give them ‘personality’ J
sofia

Comments

  1. "These toilets and showers offer the community access to desperately needed sanitation services as well as to cater for the tourists that have gradually increased since Maliangin Island being Being the first demonstration site, the island is important for the local community to show the ability to improve its socio-economic status as well." <-- this is garbled.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

A Trip to Pulau Tigabu on the Eastern Edge of Tun Mustapha Park

Have you thought of what these two big brands can do together?

CROC INCIDENT OFF BALAMBANGAN ISLAND