Toilets Bring Change to Uganda

Prior to the introduction of pour flush toilets to Ndeeba Parish, Uganda, residents were using plastic bags as toilets and disposing of them in the drainage channels. This was causing environmental and health hazards for the people living in this slum. New technology changed all that.

Ndeeba Parish, located in Rubaga Division, is a slum dwelling community. This parish, just like any other slum area, is grappling with the challenge of managing sanitary waste. Deplorable unsanitary conditions had been very apparent in this community. The community had resorted to the practice of using polythene bags as a toilet and throwing the waste in open drainage channels. A lot of waste was generated and was not collected which will eventually choke the environment and the community.

However, the Ndeeba Catholic Church is helping to ensure that pour flush toilets in Ndeeba parish are sustainably maintained. This has resulted in a renewed outlook among the community members and attitudes are changing. The community has expressed gratitude and ownership, and demonstrated to others how people should maintain pour flush toilets. Having instituted a user committee comprised of three community users and four local leaders, they have managed to ensure proper operations and maintenance of the new toilet facilities.

What sets this community apart is reflected in how they have embraced pour flush toilets as a solution to a sanitation problem that had always affected them greatly. The solution that this technology brings has rendered the community health protection from unsanitary diseases and has created a lucrative business for landlords and caretakers who maintain the technology. This was witnessed at Madam Fausta’s Toilet Facility in the same parish. Madam Fausta was able to pay the community contribution, amounting to UGX 300,000, using monies saved from her pour flush toilet business.

CIDI, Water.org's partner agency, has observed that in urban areas large quantities of precious water gets wasted in the old flush tank systems, so they have begun using funds from Water.org to promote the usage of pour flush toilets over the traditional tank flush system as it saves water and is easier to empty when full.

Capital city: Kampala
Population of 34.5 million
12 million lack safe water
18 million have no sanitation services
Infant mortality rate of 6.4%
31% live in poverty

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