900 Sanitation Lovers Congregate in Kigali – Shit Happens!
Sanergy attended Africa San 3 in Kigali, Rwanda last week. The Gates Foundation used this platform to announce its “Reinvent the Toilet” mission. The 900+ attendees from all over Africa, including the World Bank, governments, country development agencies, leading NGOs and beyond, welcomed the news that such an influential voice in development is taking on the cause of sanitation.
The Gates Foundation announced several grants at the launch, and Sanergy is fortunate to be affiliated with two of them. We will pilot and field test waste processing technologies being developed at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and at –the Hertz Foundation and a consortium of US Universities including Stanford, UC Berkeley, and MIT.
As conferences go, this one about sanitation was definitely more in-your-face. New promotion campaigns such as “GDP for GDP” – Good Dignity Projects for Gross Domestic Product –are emphasizing the economic and social benefit that can come from sanitation. We were also happy to see that our motto of “Turn Shit into Gold” that we’ve been emphasizing for the past year is catching on widely! One assuring highlight was the emphasis on including effective waste collection and disposal in any holistic sanitation solution. In this regard, Sanergy felt ahead of the curve as we have developed a sanitation system designed to easily remove waste.
Sanergy was thrilled to hear that our friends at IDE – Cambodia received a grant to scale up their Easy Latrine program around the world. In just one year, IDE – Cambodia has sold over 25,000 toilets to rural communities. The key to their success: a solid product designed for what users want, committed entrepreneurs, and the capacity / infrastructure to scale when the going got good. Great job, Cordell, Tamara and the team!