Slum Sanitation Powers Communities, Entrepreneurship and Farms

Living in the western world, there are many everyday things we take for granted. One that always comes up when travelling to more adventurous, exotic places, is access to clean, “western” style toilets. Little do we know that what we’re accustomed to, as the definition of an adequate washroom – flush toilet, toilet paper and sink with running water, to many, is a luxury.

According to Sanergy statistics, 2.6 billion people around the world do not have access to proper sanitation, which leads to 1.7 million deaths annually. In Kenya’s slums alone, there are 8 million people who lack access to adequate sanitation.

Sanergy is working in Kenya to promote increasing access to hygienic sanitation facilities by building a scalable network of sanitation centres across Nairobi slums and growing the network via franchising local entrepreneurs, developing waste collection infrastructure, and converting the waste into electricity and fertilizer.

Starting by addressing basic services such as providing hot showers and clean toilets, the low-cost, franchised sanitation centres are designed to accommodate 77 people with the goal of expanding to every block of the slum. Through pay-per-use fees, membership plans and sale of complementary products, an incentive exists for local franchisees to offer good customer service and upkeep their facilities.

The waste gathered from these centres is deposited in air-tight containers and collected daily by Sanergy employees from the franchisees and replaced with clean, empty containers; full containers are brought to a central processing facility where its contents are converted into biogas. This is combusted to generate electricity to be sold directly to Kenya Power, while the output from biogas generation is converted into top quality fertilizer, that will be sold to farms.

This innovative model by Sanergy not only addresses the health need for adequate sanitation, but offers opportunities to local entrepreneurs and creates jobs at each level.

Thank you Sanergy for making our world wonderful.

LET ME KNOW, REPLY BELOW: In your travels, where did you have the worst bathroom experience?

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