I have worked as an artisan for 27 years. Two of the 27 years have been as an artisan on WSUP’s supported compound sanitation project. Those two years have been more rewarding to me than the 25 years prior, since I have been able to sell 75 household toilets…. WSUP has and continues to offer business development training… that enables my business to thrive.
Creating an enabling environment for compound sanitation
We help provide low-income residents in compound housing with alternatives to public toilets, which can be unsafe and unhygienic. To do this we engage private sector partners such as toilet manufacturers, municipal authorities, microfinance providers and local communities. Our support has ensured artisans are trained how to build toilets, as well as strengthened the capacity of environmental health officers and engaged financial institutions to provide loans that allow low-income households to own toilets.
Establishing a container-based sanitation business
We’ve set up a container-based sanitation business in Kumasi called Clean Team, which charges a monthly fee to provide customers with a toilet and regularly collects waste. By March 2017, Clean Team was providing a service to 1,150 households, benefiting over 5,000 people. The business is now ready to build on this success and scale up a sustainable and financially viable business model.
Improving school sanitation
Improving water and sanitation facilities and hygiene practices in schools can make a big different to children’s health. So we’ve supported the KMA to improve sanitation in selected city schools. This initiative included providing toilet facilities in seven schools, developing a facilities management plan and training health education coordinators. Our goal is for these schools to be models for improvements for others in the city.
Supporting improvements in faecal waste collection and treatment
Faecal waste needs to be disposed of safely so that it doesn’t become a community health hazard. So we’re supporting KMA to improve the operations of vacuum tankers, which empty pit latrines and sceptic tanks. We’ve done this through training them to build up their capacity, and supported the creation of a vacuum tanker operators’ association which improves communication and customer service.
We’re also helping KMA to restore the city’s sewage treatment plant which serves about 90% of the population. The plant has not been maintained due to lack of funds and is becoming increasingly ineffective. We also advised KMA on vacuum truck operator charges to ensure sufficient future funding for the plant.
WSUP’s support to the KMA for improved sanitation services is a legacy that will forever remain integral to the Assembly’s sanitation service delivery. The focus of WSUP on systemic changes for sanitation ensures that not only is physical sanitation infrastructure improved, but the capacity of the Assembly is also strengthened to sustainably deliver its core mandate.