Got Soap? A Volunteer in Peru put together this great tutorial on how to build your own soap dispenser! 

Materials : 2 liter soda bottle, 3 liter soda bottle, 1 “closet bolt” or other bolt (1/4”x 2”), 5 of ¼” nuts, 2 rubber washers, Africano contact glue, screw(s) to attach holder to wall. Drill & bit.

Remove bottle labels and cut off both bottle bottoms. Cut off top of the 3 L bottle, about 2” from cap, so that it creates a 2” diameter hole.

Mount the inverted 3L bottle on a wall or suspend by string as standard Tippy Tap.

Drill a clean 3/8” hole in the center of the 2 L cap. Smooth edges with steel wool or sandpaper.

Plunger assembly: Thread all nuts up to the bolt head, glue one rubber washer to inside of cap and the other to underside of bolt head (or nut), (contact cement MUST be slightly dry before assembly). Slide open end of bolt through cap hole and thread on bolt cap. 

Put the cap on the 2L bottle and insert entire unit into the 3L holder.
Fill with liquid soap (thicker the better). Coat the 2 washer contact surfaces with Vaseline for better seal.

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World Water Day: Did you know?

85% of the world population lives in the driest half of the planet


6 to 8 million people die annually from the consequences of disasters and water-related diseases


About 66% of Africa is arid or semi-arid and more than 300 of the 800 million people in sub-Saharan Africa live in a water-scarce environment


Water for irrigation and food production constitutes one of the greatest pressures on freshwater resources. Agriculture accounts for ~70% of global freshwater withdrawals (up to 90% in some fast-growing economies)

World Water Day: Did you know?

  • 85% of the world population lives in the driest half of the planet

  • 6 to 8 million people die annually from the consequences of disasters and water-related diseases

  • About 66% of Africa is arid or semi-arid and more than 300 of the 800 million people in sub-Saharan Africa live in a water-scarce environment

  • Water for irrigation and food production constitutes one of the greatest pressures on freshwater resources. Agriculture accounts for ~70% of global freshwater withdrawals (up to 90% in some fast-growing economies)

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"Water holds the key to sustainable development, we must work together to protect and carefully manage this fragile, finite resource."  - United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon

Happy World Water Day!

World Water Day is held annually on March 22 focusing attention on the importance of freshwater and advocating for the sustainable management of freshwater resources.

Our Volunteers around the world work with local governments, clinics, nongovernmental organizations, and communities at the grassroots level, where the need is most urgent and the impact can be the greatest, focusing on outreach, social and behavior change in public health, hygiene and water sanitation.

(Source: peacecorps.gov)

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It’s Global Handwashing Day!

Handwashing with soap has an important role to play in child survival and health. One of the most cost-effective interventions, simply handwashing with soap can reduce the incidence of diarrhea among children under five by almost 50 percent, and respiratory infections by nearly 25 percent!

Reblog this if you’ve washed your hands today! 

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Peace Corps Volunteer Tackles a Sensitive Women’s Health Problem in Uganda

When Stacey Frankenstein-Markon discovered that girls in Uganda often used rags, old socks or wads of newspapers to do the job of sanitary napkins, she was shocked. She was even more horrified to realize that purchasing commercial pads was an impossible dream for most of them, since they come from families of subsistence farmers making about $1 a day in disposable income. 

“Disposable pads cost $1 for an 8-pack,” says the 25-year-old Peace Corps Volunteer, who with her husband, Tony Markon, is serving in Uganda as part of Michigan Technological University’s Peace Corps Master’s International (PCMI) program in applied science education. “If a family has three daughters who need pads, that family would have to spend 20 percent of their income just on menstrual pads. Who can afford to do that?”

The pad problem also was leading girls to stay away from school, fearing that they might stain their clothes and be badgered by boys, Frankenstein-Markon said.  Eventually, they fall so far behind that they have to drop out. 

But thanks to the inventiveness of another Peace Corps Volunteer who had served in the eastern Ugandan region just before the Markons got there in 2010, the Michigan Tech student has been able to help hundreds of girls practice better hygiene while they learn about menstruation, their bodies and women’s health.  And not incidentally, stay in school. 

(Source: mtu.edu)

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I am in the middle of helping create bathrooms for an elementary school of 200 students in Morocco. This is a view taken from the top of the bathroom, looking down. This picture was taken by a Moroccan volunteer using my camera. The volunteers are wetting the cement, then they will mix it, and pass it on to the top of the bathroom so they can finish creating the ceiling.

Peace Corps Health Volunteer Samantha Spencer

I am in the middle of helping create bathrooms for an elementary school of 200 students in Morocco. This is a view taken from the top of the bathroom, looking down. This picture was taken by a Moroccan volunteer using my camera. The volunteers are wetting the cement, then they will mix it, and pass it on to the top of the bathroom so they can finish creating the ceiling.

Peace Corps Health Volunteer Samantha Spencer

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