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We are happy to inform you that Kenya Urban Roads Authority responded positively, regarding building toilets on roads in Kericho County (see self explanatory twitter conversation above).

You are like-d by the village around Makindu Primary School. They want you to mark their rainwater harvesting tank as illustrated above, for free, see more details here. When you agree, they get water which they currently have little of. When you agree, you will also enable many more similar schools and villages to get water and toilets.

Regards,

RaHaSolutions

Public toilets that are poorly located generate a sense of neglect, attracting vandalism, anti-social behaviour and social disorder. And lack of available and appropriate facilities at the right time encourages fouling, and treating diseases associated with open defecation such as typhoid, dysentery or cholera is a significant and costly task.

These issues, if not tackled effectively, can generate a cycle of decline, leading to more entrenched social problems, and seriously impairing quality of place and quality of life for local people.

Others have seen this reality before. HIGHWAY ACT 1980 Part VII Provision of Special Facilities for Highways states that “…112 Provision of picnic sites and public conveniences for users of trunk roads (1) The Minister may provide on land adjoining, or in the vicinity of, a trunk road that is not a special road a picnic site for motorists and others likely to use the road with space for parking vehicles and a means of access to and from a highway. An area of any such land as aforesaid in which there are, or are to be, provided such a picnic site, parking space and means of access as aforesaid is in this Act referred to as a “trunk road picnic area “.

“(2) The Minister may erect buildings and execute works on a trunk road picnic area for the purpose of providing all or any of the following:— (a) parking places for vehicles, (b) a means of access to or from the area from or to a highway, (c) public sanitary conveniences (including lavatories), and…”

“…(5) The Minister may provide public sanitary conveniences (including lavatories) in proper and convenient situations on or under land forming part of a trunk road that is not a special road, or adjoining, or in the vicinity of, such a road and may manage such conveniences…”

The extent to which people have easy access to good quality toilets affects their general health and well being – and that of the whole community. Enabling different people, with different needs, to make use of public toilets at different times can have a significant impact on issues like public health and exercise, public behaviour, use of public transport.

A lack of clean, accessible and safe toilets impacts on some people more than others. Some people may feel unable or reluctant to leave their homes and visit areas where they fear they will not be able to find a public toilet. Older people, mothers, fathers, and carers with young children, disabled people and people with chronic health problems – all need easy access to suitably equipped public toilet facilities.

The filters will be cased in either concrete or plastic shafts.

Rainwater from the drained area is fed into the inlet (marker 1), which is at the lower end of the shaft. A deflector plate sets up a radial flow.

At place marked 2, sedimentation of particles, especially the sand faction and above, takes place in the hydrodynamic separator. This is due to turbulent secondary flows within a radial laminar flow regime.

The settlable solids are collected at point marked 3 via an opening in the silt trap chamber. This chamber is evacuated periodically, via the by-pass central tube at intervals.

Four filter elements are located within the filter shaft (part marked 4). As waters flow upwards the finer particles are filtered out, whilst the dissolved pollutants are precipitated and absorbed. The filter is easily backwashed, and if completely clogged or exhausted, is easily replaced (often once per year).

At point marked 5, is clean water above the filter elements passing to discharge via an oil trap assembly. In the event of major spill, free floating oils etc are retained here. Normal concentrations of dissolved oils are retained within the filter elements.

We are thrilled to announce that we have today submitted to Billion Dollar Business Alliance (BDBA) our offer to build filters next to water ponds that BDBA are currently building in Kenya.

Our offer is based on fact that cleaning of water is not part of activities BDBA is doing. They are harvesting rainwater for agriculture and, apparently, they assumed that farmers would not use the water for domestic purposes. Our contribution to the BDBA project will enable beneficiaries of the ponds to use the water for drinking as well – for a large number of the beneficiaries, this will be their only water source.

We have also offered to build toilets in toilet-less homes and along roads that are within areas that drain water to the ponds. This will reduce pollution of water that will end up in the ponds. The SANI SOLAR toilets sun dry faeces and urine to form fertiliser that the farmers will need.

We sent our offer through BDBA’s Maimbo M. Malesu of World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF). ICRAF, WFP and Government of Kenya are members of the BDBA.

Today, we received letter above from Kenya Roads Board (KRB). KRB’s executive director, Eng. Jacob Z. Ruwa, on behalf of the board, acknowledges that the building of solar toilets on the roads in Kericho County is noble and important.

Main reason for building the toilets on road reserves is safety of the public and maintenance staff. This mitigates against a range of actual and perceived safety risks to person and property that may be encountered at public toilets. These include anti-social behaviours such as vandalism, graffitiing, loitering, and drug abuse.

Building the toilets on road reserves is the only means of ensuring that entrances of the toilets face onto the most active space. This alone will reduce the likelihood of crime in set locations. While it is impossible to ‘design out’ crime, careful planning and detailing with crime in mind have been shown to reduce actual crime and unintended behaviours, and to improve public perception of personal safety.

 

USA based, Building Tomorrow, Inc., joins with RaHa in bringing toilets in Kyassonko Primary School and water in St. Timothy Bunyere Primary school.

Olivia Schneider, Program Associate of Building Tomorrow has just written to RaHa confirming there support.

As of May 2018, Building Tomorrow has opened 62 fully operational schools in Uganda, providing enough learning space for over 20,000 students and counting. Through their Thriving Schools Program, they have enrolled over 24,000 formerly out-of-school children back in school.

Altogether, through both their Building Tomorrow Primary Schools and Thriving Schools Program, Building Tomorrow serves over 101,000 students each and every day.

They continue to push towards completing their Educate51k plan as part of the Clinton Global Initiative, a five year, $12 million plan to provide a safe, local, permanent, quality and supportive learning environment for an additional 50,980 children across Uganda. And everyday they work to achieve their vision of a world where every child has access to an inclusive, quality education.

Places – where we live, school, travel, shop, work, take recreation – are more accessible and attractive when public toilets are well planned, designed, maintained, clearly signposted, and available when people need to use them. They are one of a range of amenities that help to attract a more diverse range of visitors, encouraging them to spend longer in the country, and to visit again. 

Being able to access a toilet is a fundamental need for any visitor therefore, a lot of clean toilets should be built so that information about the toilets can be distributed wildly, signposts regarding clean toilets should be on all roads – tourists choose their destinations carefully, drawing on their previous impressions, talking to friends and family, looking up feedback on the internet. 

Good public toilets are important therefore, we increase accessibility and quality of public toilets; and we ensure everyone is working together on this. That is why we publish about the toilets we provide and toilets in general.

We publicly review the causes of decline, set out a range of approaches that go beyond the traditional public toilets, and encourage partnerships between roads and local authorities, the private sector, and local people to devise solutions that are tailored to the needs of different people at different times of the day.

Our publicity accentuates the positive: there are some excellent examples of approaches to promoting public access to toilets, often involving the private sector, and engaging pro-actively with local communities to ensure that their needs and priorities are met.

Importantly, we hope to take taboo out of toilets, to stimulate discussion, to achieve better provision, and to promote a positive shift in attitudes and approaches to the whole issue of toilet provision and use.