Sanitary Latrine: Odilia Cutuc Serech


A few concrete blocks and wooden sticks stand as walls, and a concrete cylinder makes a toilet seat. There is no roof or door.

This was what the latrine of Odilia (33) used be. Although Odilia’s husband, Sergio (29), built it 4 years ago, it is in poor condition. “He built it with what we had” she explains. Today, the dilapidated latrine remains as a ruin, nearby to the new latrine, which was built by Habitat Guatemala international volunteers. The contrast is astonishing.

Odilia stands proudly in front of the new latrine. She opens the door, and at the first sight, you can notice the perfect cleanliness. Odilia explains,“I never leave the latrine dirty. I take really good care of it.” She smiles proudly. “It is so easy to clean: a bucket of bleach and a mop, that’s it! Before it was impossible to clean the old latrine.”

Thanks to Habitat for Humanty Guatemala’s Healthy Home Kit program, Odila can provide the best hygienic environment for her two little boys, Jonathan (2) and Gierber (9). She looks with tenderness at Jonathan, who is playing on the ground, and says: “With the previous latrine, I was always afraid that something happens to my boys. It was not adapted to children. The toilet seat was too wide, I was afraid that they would fall into the hole. I felt bad about it.”

She is happy with the change to the new latrine. “Thanks to the work of the volunteers, I am not afraid anymore to let Gierber going alone to the bathroom.” She is grateful to the group who came to build the new latrine. “I don’t know where they are now, but God bless them and be with them”.