Operating in countries all over the world including Nepal, the United States and Bangladesh, Healthabitat’s goal is to make the world a healthier, cleaner place for everyone. Their projects focus on improving sanitation, helping people gain access to clean water and providing housing for those in need.

Healthabitat was formed in 1985 when the directors came together to improve the health environment in the Anangu Pitjantjatjara lands of northwest South Australia. Since then, Healthabitat has expanded out of Australia to help disadvantaged people all around the world.

When it was formed in 1985, the directors of Healthabitat put together a list of nine steps to healthy living, which has been used as a guideline for their practices ever since.

These steps ensure that people not only improve their sanitation and living conditions but that they are provided with adequate housing to help decrease mortality rates, particularly among children under the age of 5.

The members of Healthabitat follow a constrained methodology aimed at improving the lives of all involved. This methodology is then improved to accommodate for changes in lifestyles. Data is collected to monitor improvements and is used to better designs.

They then do applied research and develop projects based on the results. Their projects typically involve the help of indigenous people, with 75% of all volunteers coming from their respective local communities. Lastly, the methodology is staged and developed.

In addition to these practices, Healthabitat also works on health hardware for disadvantaged people. This includes a water supply, pumps, tanks, pipes, valves, taps, hot water system, tub and drainage pipes.

The overall goal of Healthabitat is to decrease the number of sick people in the world. The three partners, Paul Pholeros, Dr. Paul Torzillo and Stephan Rainow, along with the guidance of Yami Lester, former director of the controlled health service, Nganampa Health Council, put their minds together to make it all happen.

Healthabitat continues to help people all over the world. Right now, a project they are focusing on is providing the victims of the Nepal earthquake with toilets and housing, while continuing to work in South Australia and the surrounding areas.

Julia Hettiger

Sources: Health Habitat, Top Masters in Healthcare, World Habitat Awards
Photo: cusphabitat