Our Next Steps
Aboaboso project is now moving to the next stage with construction of a
composting facility now complete. Many of the logistics associated with
commissioning a self-contained and sustainable sanitation programme are now
being decided by the village’s residents. Among the first decisions taken by
the community was to set up a collection of all household organic waste every
two days for transport by community members to the compost facility.
All 6 chambers have been filled and the contents are turned regularly. Compost toilet designs have been agreed by the community and plans are underway to begin construction.
Thanks to all of you who helped to promote our campaign and especially to our many contributors.
And Special thanks to the The Fontana Foundation who helped us to raise additional money for this campaign!
SanSol team would like to thank all 56 contributors to the 2014/2015
Give Dignity a Chance. Their donations benefited the Aboaboso project by more than
$10,000. Those donating $1000 or more have been recognised on a commemorative
plaque made from local hardwood, shortly (or already!!!) to be erected in the village itself.
In addition to individual names, the wording on the plaque reads:
T o learn more about this 2015 Indiegogo campaign read on.....
Our story takes place in Aboaboso (www.youtube.com/watchhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U_i3yLx5t8M), a small community of 1500 people just west of Kumasi, in the central-southern part of Ghana. The village, which relies heavily on their cocoa and palm oil plantations, is typical of many throughout the country in terms of size, income and aspirations for improved sanitation facilities. We plan to help the community to develop a successful small-scale operation in Aboaboso in order to validate a business model for effective sustainable sanitation. This will support research to demonstrate health and soil fertility benefits to further validate and ultimately support expansion of this business model to other communities in the developing world. Every village that makes better sanitation choices for their people also makes better choices for the entire planet.
What We Need & What You Get
Our Funding Goal
hope to raise 50,000USD in order to have sufficient capital to support the
community of Aboaboso to build 35 household toilets, public toilets for the
local school, and conduct research to demonstrate the benefits of this
sanitation solution in order to replicate the model for other communities.
Funds are also needed for training local villagers. On completion, they will
be employed to build compost latrines, collect compost, manage a compost
facility and sell and distribute the local fertilizer. Help sponsor a toilet
for Aboaboso families and their school!
The problem: Inappropriate sanitation, poor hygiene practices at the household level, nutrient depletion of agricultural soil and overuse of expensive chemical fertilisers cause severe environmental pollution and pose a substantial health risk. It is estimated that in Ghana, only 14 % of the population have access to household sanitation facilities that meet WHO improved sanitation standards and millions are spent annually on healthcare costs to address sanitation related diseases.
The opportunity: Raising these standards would bring huge benefits to society as a whole, as well as to local communities such as Aboaboso. The uncontrolled disposal of human waste has been directly implicated in a variety of sanitation-related diseases, consuming an estimated equivalent of 150 million USD in healthcare costs across the nation annually (
allafrica.com/stories/201204201313.html). Managing sanitary waste, and its associated disease risks, would also reduce reliance on antibiotics and other costly medications, and health care professionals, and improve both the nation’s quality of life and worker productivity.
Although this may be common knowledge, sanitation projects frequently lack the priority level they deserve from local communities and organizations, thus additional incentives are needed to ensure appropriate support. There are a number of opportunities to add value to sanitation solutions and turn them into additional benefits for the community. Take food supply, for instance: The central place held by the phosphorus in crop production is well understood by agriculturalists. Access to this element is crucial for improving soil fertility and global food security. Recycling of this finite nutrient could decelerate soil nutrient depletion, reduce reliance on imported fertilizers and thus strengthen the security of the nation's internal food supply. Locally produced organic fertilizer, produced from human waste, household organic waste and agricultural waste could reduce the need for imports while also providing a source of income. In Ghana alone, imported chemical fertilizers in 2012 cost the government approx. 43 million USD (thinkbrigade.com/rio20/chemical-fertilizer-impedes-development-of-african-agriculture/; www.modernghana.com/news/328668/1/government-is-to-subsidise-price-of-fertilizer-.html). And this is where the controlled sanitary waste disposal closes the loop to the improvement of soil fertility by producing organic fertilizers locally. As a significant bonus, this relatively simple added value loop can contribute to creating and raising the knowledge basis and capabilities of the local community.
“There was a time when humans operated totally self-sufficient farms, and managed waste effectively, by simply making sure that everything that came out of the land eventually went back into it. In such a closed-loop scenario, phosphates have the capacity to be reused [over and over again in a cycle, starting as food, and proceeding through fuel, fertilizer, and finally back to food again]. In the fertilizing techniques that dominate today, which involve the annual application of phosphate-enriched chemical mixtures on top of nutrient-starved soil, phosphorus is used exactly once, then swept out to sea. This practice is simply unsustainable.” [Retrieved from web.mit.edu/12.000/www/m2016/finalwebsite/solutions/phosphorus.html].
The solution: Although considerable benefits can be realised by the combination of improved sanitation and nutrient cycling, successful introduction of these concepts remains low. There is a great need to develop well-adapted sanitation and compost systems and to translate their advantages into direct economic benefits. Clear guidelines on how to set-up, maintain and profit from compost sanitation systems could help local communities and partners to realise these benefits.
This is your opportunity to help Aboaboso to develop a sustainable sanitation solution that can be used as a model for other communities throughout the developing world. Together, if we all give a little we can accomplish a lot, not only for this community, but also for the planet, one small village at a time.
The SanSol Campaign: Sanitation Solutions was initiated in October 2011 and registered in Ghana in June 2012 as an NGO. The nationalities of the Management Team are Ghanaian, Cameroonian, German, British/Swiss and Canadian, all of whom share a common commitment to help improve health and sanitation in the developing world. Our project is intended to complement the Ghana Compact on Sanitation and Water for All initiative, announced by the Ghanaian Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development (MLGRD), October 2014. This, in turn, is in line with the Ghanaian Government's “commitment to providing accelerated and sustainable access to sanitation and [the] provision of safe water in the country.” The program could also be relevant and scalable for adaptation to any developing country.
With Your Help:
SanSol in partnership with Millennium Villages Project Ghana and the Fontana Foundation in Switzerland can achieve the following:
i) Implement a fully functional compost sanitation and nutrient reuse system in Aboaboso, Ghana (pilot for scale up in any community in the developing world)
ii) Raise awareness and develop educational programs
iii) Generate health and crop data to validate the business model
iv) Accelerate the development of similar projects in other communities (and countries) by replicating and adapting successful technologies and management practices.
Many prior attempts to improve sanitation in developing countries have yielded only disappointing results. Without doubt, a major contributor to this lack of success has been the use of donations to build household and public toilet facilities while neglecting to engage the community or to make proper provision for regular maintenance. Projects that have been successful have directly involved the communities and gained their commitment to manage and maintain the toilets.
In order for SanSol to mitigate any potential risk, the community will be engaged in the development of an optimum business model which will include a commitment by the farming community and cooperative to purchase the fertilizer generated.
Local governments will also be encouraged to support the community in building the compost toilets by contributing some of the opportunity cost per household or by providing an interest-free loan to the community.
This pilot allows SanSol to raise needed capital to initiate the project. However, the community has agreed to repay part of the capital raised. This repayment will then be made available to support similar projects in other communities.
Ways You Can Help
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To manage health risk of using humane manure SanSol applies the multi-barrier approach, where the most significant barriers are: Containment (vs. open defecation), treatment (composting, per WHO requirements, crop selection (excluding vegetables and fruit growing close to soil and eaten raw), timing avoiding field application shortly before harvest and food preparation (education, e.g. teaching importance of washing hands and vegetables before food preparation).
For further information see also;
Germer, J., Boh, M.Y., Schoeffler, M., Amoah, P., 2010. Temperature and deactivation of microbial faecal indicators during small scale co-composting of faecal matter. Waste Management 30, 185–191