Let’s talk about shit!

Waking up in the hotel and having a shower as well as running water reminded me it’s completely different for a lot of people around Lubango where we stayed that night.

In the capital of Huila province we met in the morning the Head of the Directorate of Energy and Water.

Photo Gerald Folly
Photo Gerald Folly

He gave us a brief introduction into data of the province: out of more than three million inhabitants 59 percent have access to water at their homes or nearby water distribution points. And only 20 percent have access to proper sanitation facilities. That means there is a lot to do for his department.

Together with some staff of the directorate we started a tour in and around Lubango to see what has happened in terms of water supplies and sanitation.

Street view - photo Gerald Folly
Street view – photo Gerald Folly

We started our tour and visited a pastor next to his church and the annexed toilets at this place. This is an important thing to have them there as a lot of development here is a change in mindset of the people. The priest serves here to the surrounding community as a role model to promote the importance to have a proper toilet – to prevent diseases or illness and improve the health situation and quality of life of the people.

Pedro with the local Priest, who helps to sensitise the communitiy for hygeene and sanitation. Photo  Gerald Folly
Pedro with the local Priest, who helps to sensitise the communitiy for hygeene and sanitation. Photo Gerald Folly

Around in the neighborhood we then saw some examples of newly installed toilets next to or inside homes. The owners were very proud of them and happy to show them to us.

Photo Gerald Folly
Photo Gerald Folly
This latrine is inside the house, which increases comfort. Photo Gerald Folly
This latrine is inside the house, which increases comfort. Photo Gerald Folly

The next stop was at a water supply point – a pump from a dwell about 50 meters below surface brought the water up in a tank. This system runs on solar power and is independent. Each family contributes two US-dollars per month and can use the cleaned potable water and in addition the washing facilities for clothes.

Photo by Gerald Folly
Local water supply point, which also provides facilities to wash laundry. Photo by Gerald Folly

Finally we got the chance to see a demonstration site for toilets – in the last two years more than 1000 people got consultancy on how to erect and install a toilet in their home. More than 700 already did that investment. Of course there are costs, but the people can get support in getting cheap material for building them up.

Four types of toilets were promoted fitting to the financial possibilities of the people.

Photo by Gerald Folly
Photo by Gerald Folly

Here is type four: Investment 2000 US-dollars, with water supply and tiles inside. A ceramic toilet and wash basin is integrated. If you can afford it, this should be your choice.

Photo by Gerald Folly
Photo by Gerald Folly

Next is type three: Investment 1000 US-dollars, this model is promoted at the site as it fits more to the financial possibilities of the many people but gives a big impact on your hygienic situation. The tiles from Model 4 are replaced by cement and the Washing basin is now two buckets – one for clean and used water each. Not to forget a small plastic mug for carrying the water from one to another bucket – essential for not transmitting bacteria’s!

Photo by Gerald Folly
Photo by Gerald Folly

The following type two is an investment of 200 US-dollars, if you build your blocks of the construction by yourself or up to 450 US-dollars if you buy everything. This one is simpler as the two models before but still has a tank with siphon to avoid smell. Most of the people opt for this version as it’s a good compromise between an affordable price and an improvement of the situation before.

Photo by Gerald Folly
Photo by Gerald Folly

At the end of the visit model one was shown, with an investment of 20 US-dollars only. This is a basic possibility of having a toilet at home. Keeping in mind more than 30% of the population lives below the poverty line of 1.75 US-dollars per day is still is a notable amount of money.

Photo by Gerald Folly
Photo by Gerald Folly

In addition practical tips are given to the visitors how to build the future toilet in an efficient way. Summarizing the morning you can be sure it’s good to talk about shit, it really can improve your daily situation at home!

Group photo by Gerald Folly
Group photo by Gerald Folly
English
    Gerald Folly