BOX 4-3Community Leadership to Improve Sanitation

Ashoka Fellow Hamzah Harum Al’Rasyid works in poor urban areas in Indonesia to provide “community-based sanitation centers.” Mr. Al’Rasyid works with community members to identify a family willing (and sometimes eager) to learn how to operate a portable toilet facility as a small business. Before making the match, he listens to communities about how the technology would be accepted, and how it might be adapted to meet local needs. For example, the toilets for one particular facility were refitted in keeping with community comments. Raising awareness to the health benefits of reduced sewage on the streets is one of Mr. Al’Rasyid’s main objectives. If a community ultimately decides to adopt the technology, and if a family can be identified for training, the match is made. Initial experience shows success in reduced sewage in the streets, increased awareness of good sanitation practices, and sustained efforts. Furthermore, the network of facilities Mr. Al’Rasyid is developing offers promise for introducing other community-based services in the future, such as reverse osmosis clean water systems and local production of biogas for practical use in the communities.

From: 4, Addressing Risk for Waterborne Disease

Cover of Global Issues in Water, Sanitation, and Health
Global Issues in Water, Sanitation, and Health: Workshop Summary.
Institute of Medicine (US) Forum on Microbial Threats.
Washington (DC): National Academies Press (US); 2009.
Copyright © 2009, National Academy of Sciences.

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