Tag Archives: The Gulper

Sanitation as a business – the poor will have to wait

Malawian sanitation entrepreneur Martius using

Malawian sanitation entrepreneur Martius using “The Gulper” to empty a pit latrine. Photo: Water for People

Providing toilets to the poorest may be “dear to the hearts of many non-profits, aid agencies and governments” but if you want to involve business you have to start with the better-off families first. So says business woman and sanitation entrepreneur Towera Jalakari who runs a pit emptying service in Blantyre, Malawi.

“We will get to Everyone in Blantyre one day, but the only way to make sure Blantyre actually solves its sanitation problems is to recognize that the market must function.  [...]  As we get better, as we scale city-wide, then costs will come down, services will improve, and pressure will build for all people to have a toilet.  We will get to the poorest, but they are not our first targets.  [...] If we rush too fast [...] then the poor will not have lasting services but rather a lot of useless toilets and nowhere to go to the bathroom.”

Malawi is one the countries in Water for People’s Sanitation as a Business program (2010-2014), which is funded by a US$ 5.6 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Water for People has contracted Tools for Enterprise & Education Consultants (TEECs) to support pit emptying businesses in Lilongwe and Blantyre.

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Africa wide WASH technology review published

The WASHTech project has published a literature review focusing on 14 technologies used in Africa in the water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) sector.

The following sanitation and hygiene technologies are included in the review:

  • Bio-additives to pit latrines
  • VIP latrines
  • Urine diversion dry toilets
  • Gulper
  • Tippy tap

For each technology there is a description of the range of literature available on it, a concise description of the technology itself, a description of its application, a selection of interesting case studies, and an explanation as to whether the technology meets technical, financial, social and institutional success criteria.

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BBC World – WaterAid’s Gulper in action in Tanzania

4 August 2011 – The Gulper, WaterAid’s innovative machine for hygienically emptying pit latrines, will feature in a new BBC World documentary series on Saturday 6 August at 10.10 and 20.10 GMT.

The film, which has been made by independent production company Rockhopper, will appear on The Health Show, a groundbreaking new series covering major health stories from around the world.

Rachel Pilkington, WaterAid’s Media Officer, who accompanied the film crew on the trip, said: “We were delighted that The Gulper was chosen for this documentary series as it is really helping to reduce the spread of disease in urban settlements in Tanzania.

“Being featured on BBC World provides WaterAid with the valuable opportunity to spread awareness of its sanitation work among new and varied audiences across the globe.”

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