A favorite place

With Toilet Credit, Hayati’s House Now Becomes the Favorite Holiday Place for Her Grandchildren and In Laws

For Hayati, life without a toilet or shower was normal. Ever since she and her husband got married, they lived in a home where they would defecate a stall in the garden and shower in an open-air booth in the kitchen. Hayati’s three children all grew up in this scenario and they never had any problem with it. Hayati even mentioned that this was not troublesome or distressing for her or her family- in fact, it was just the way things were done since Hayati was a child. But, as Hayati’s children grew older and moved to Jakarta, they started to develop different habits.

Like other residents of Jakarta, Hayati’s grown children had their own toilet and bathroom. Hayati’s sons-in-law and her grandchildren were accustomed to using the toilet and having the privacy and security of a bathroom. Hayati became dismayed when she realized that her family did not feel comfortable staying long in her home because of the lack of toilet or bathroom.

“Every holiday, we would have a family gathering at my house but they children would not want to stay overnight. They would eat and drink only a little, even though I cooked it myself, because they did not want to have to use the bathroom while they are here. My grandchildren said they don’t want to go outside to defecate- they said it was muddy and dirty. My son-in-law also said he feels uncomfortable showering in a booth that only has a sheet to separate the shower area from the kitchen. Because of all this, they return to their homes in the evenings.”

In the months leading up to the Islamic fasting month of Ramadan in 2016, Hayati started feeling restless. She wanted to construct a bathroom in her house and to update her kitchen. Although the rest of her house had been updated, the bathroom and kitchen were still holding her back. She didn’t want another holiday to roll around and have to face the same embarrassment she felt in the previous years. However, she was concerned about how she would finance this type of project. Hayati’s husband’s Nurhadi did not receive a fixed income, and she was uncomfortable to borrow from moneylenders, let alone banks.

Her problem was answered by an officer of Kopsyah BMI (Koperasi Syariah Benteng Mikro Indonesia), a sharia-based cooperative who was promoting their Water and Sanitation Management package in her village, as well household loan facilitation for education and home improvement. After meeting with the officer, Hayati felt it was the right fit for her to take out a loan.

"I want my children, son in law and grandchildren to spend longer time at my house. It would be even better if they could spend the night during Eid," she said.

After following the simple administration process, Kopsyah BMI approved her loan application. With the package, Hayati was advised to build the toilet and bathroom facilities prior to renovating her kitchen, the loan amount is five million rupiah with 3 years installment. She pay the weekly installment to Kopsyah BMI amounted to Rp 66,000/week.

"So far, the people who take the sanitation and water package are dutifully paying their installment, so we don’t underestimate the potential of low-income households to repay, "said Yanita Nurmala, the BMI Pasar Kemis Branch Field Manager.

Hayati is proud to own the toilet and bathroom she had been wanted. Last year’s Eid celebration became a moment of surprise for her children, sons-in-law, and grandchildren who came from Jakarta. "Now they not only visit but also spend the night. In fact, my grandchildren also stay with me during their school holidays. "said Hayati, proudly. (Musfarayani- Advocacy Manager Water.org Indonesia)

The WaterCredit program emphasizes the value of educating and raising the community awareness about the importance of access to clean water and sanitation. Yanita and a number of Kopsyah BMI field staff were visiting Hayati’s community to conduct awareness building activities when they met Hayati.

Indonesia’s WaterCredit program was first implemented in Tangerang through Koperasi Syariah Benteng Mikro Indonesia (Kopsyah BMI). This partnership ran from in January 2014 to December 2016, with Water.org providing Kopsyah BMI with an operating subsidy to assist with product making cost, training, marketing, monitoring and evaluation. During the three-year partnership, Kopsyah BMI was targeted to provide funding for access to clean water and sanitation to 5,222 families in Tangerang who are generally low-income communities (LIC) with simple and inexpensive method of financing. By the end of the partnership, Kopsyah BMI surpassed the original target- they had provided access for up to 5,800 families.

In the second phase of partnership, Kopsyah BMI is targeting 10,000 low-income people to gain access to clean water and sanitation.

"This program has allowed people like Mrs. Hayati to get a chance in improving her quality of life. Including her dignity as parents. So now she had a dignified toilet and sanitation that she could be proud of to her daughter and granddaughter, "said Yanita.

Population of 255.7 million
33 million lack safe water
100 million lack sanitation
43% of the total population lives on less than US$2 per day
Capital: Jakarta