The Sani Squad is a sanitation social franchise that we are setting up and trying out with support from the WRC SASTEP programme.  The Sani Squad will provide sanitation services to households including (but not limited to): pit emptying, bathroom upgrades, conversion to flush, and construction of septic tanks.  We have recently set up a depot site for our first franchise in Sinathing area on the outskirts of Pietermaritzburg.  The team is ready to get going and to bring improved sanitation to the people of Sinathing!

We are partnering with the DBE and Domestos to help 150 schools in South Africa improve their ability to manage their school toilets! In the month of May 2018, our team conducted training sessions with school cleaners from 150 schools, including 50 in Pixley Ka Seme District (Northern Cape), 50 in Ugu District (KZN), and 50 in Umlazi District (KZN). The training sessions included practical training about why the toilets need to be cleaned daily and how to clean them in a way that fights diseases, by using Domestos, a bleach product. We also covered administrative aspects of management and shared these things with school principals as well, so that all-around management can be achieved. We’ll be following up in the next few months!

In June, two representatives from PID attended the WISA 2018 conference: Breaking Boundaries, Connecting Ideas. We presented the findings from our recent WRC research project about the acceptability of urinals for girls and women in the South African context. We found that a vast majority of girls in school and women at taxi ranks would be interested in trying female urinals, as it would give them a more hygienic experience in public toilets. We tested LiquidGold’s gender netural toilet at a few schools in Vulindlela, where 99 percent of girls said they would use the urinals if they were available at school because they are attractive, they don’t smell, and they do not require the user to sit on an unhygienic seat. Our final report will be published soon and available on the WRC’s website. Check out this article from News24 which talks about new advancements in the use of urine as a fertliser.

Last week, we received and sent out a new and improved eVac to Pivot Works, in Kigali, Rwanda. The new iteration of the eVac has one front wheel, like a wheelbarrow, to help with navigating difficult terrain. The new sludge containers have a Perspex-covered viewing port, which will help operators to see when the sludge reaches the maximum level. After testing and photographing the machine, it was packed in a crate and sent to Durban Airport to be delivered. We are excited to receive feedback from the hilly and tortuous terrain in Rwanda, where Pivot Works is creating fuel from human waste and selling it to industrial customers. Read more about the development of the eVac here.