LOCATION: Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
SUMMARY: This project wasevaluated as a highly impactful, integrated model amongst other sanitation solutions. Sanitation Social Enterprise is simultaneously: improving sanitation in Dar es Salaam; recycling human waste into fertilizer; creating job opportunities; and educating the public.
PROBLEM SPACE: Globally, 2.5 billion people lackaccess to improved sanitation facilities. As a result, thousands of people die every year because of outbreaks of diseases such as cholera. The lack of proper sanitation has negative repercussions for the development of any community, and it affects specially children and women. It can also be a barrier for accessing other goods and services such as education. At the local level, Sanitation Social Enterprise worksin Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. This city is the largest urban area in Tanzania with a population of about 4.5million. More than 80% of thepopulation lives in informal settlements, places where most of the sanitation facilities used by the community are neither improved nor properly functioning, and emptying services are not available. Although the city government mentions sanitation as one of the focus areas in their plans, only 10% of the sanitation budget goes for the
improvement of sanitation in informal settlements. Therefore, the community has been left alone to come up with solutions that can be low-cost and sustainable. Sanitation Social Enterprise seeks to responsibly address two major issues: lack of improved sanitation, and the systemic economic and social exclusion of the urban poor.
SOLUTION: This is a community-based and run social enterprise offering ecological sanitation products and services for informal services, to be piloted in Dar es Salaam and potentially replicate elsewhere. Thesolutioncombines three main elements: ecological sanitation, entrepreneurship, and education. Dry or ecological sanitation (EcoSan) considers human excreta (urine and feaces) as a resource instead of a waste. Through EcoSan, nutrients from excreta are recovered and the end product is utilized as fertilizer or soil enrichment material. Dry sanitation facilities will be built in informal areas of Dar es Salaam. This is a very convenient solution for the area, as it is a technology that consumes very little water. Construction work will be undertaken by local community based organizations (CBOs). These CBOs will attend workshops and trainings where they will learn about dry sanitation, construction skills, and business development. The solution aims at creating a social enterprise led by these CBOs whose value proposition will be to provide affordable and ecological sanitation services to the community, and to commercialize natural fertilizers. These fertilizers (from urine and compost) will be collected from the dry toilets built, and thereafter they will be taken for storage, packaging, distribution and sales.