Share this page on...
Tamil Nadu, on the south east coast of India, is considered to be one of the wealthiest states in the country, but behind the economic and industrial growth lies another story – one of acute poverty.
We have started to work with six of the poorest villages in rural Tamil Nadu. Not a single family in these communities have access to a toilet, which means that the local environment and water sources are polluted, spreading illness and disease – diarrhoea remains one of the biggest killers of children in the region.
So what are we doing?
We are putting Sanitation First, and working to make sure every person in all six villages has access to good sanitation facilities.
We are building ecosan (composting) toilets for each and every family within the villages.
Why is this innovative?
What’s new and exciting is that we are providing a sanitation service to maintain the programme. We are employing a care-taking team to empty the toilets and make sure the facilities are well-maintained and clean.
How do we pay for this?
This is the great bit – there is money to be made from poo! We store and compost the waste collected from the toilets, and sell it to generate income. This means that the programme is not just ecologically sustainable, but financially sustainable too.
Using this model we can support a cluster of 5 – 6 villages in one area. In due course we hope to roll out the programme to new areas and communities.
Believe it or not, this has not been tried anywhere in the world before so it is truly ground-breaking!
Initial trials have been so successful that our work has come to the attention of both local and central government in India. The Tamil Nadu State government is so impressed they are subsidising the programme, providing 50% funding for every family ecosan toilet that we build.
Share this page on...
Back to school
As children across the country return to school, it’s the familiar ritual of new shoes and new school uniforms. It’s hard for UK children to imagine going back to school and ...
Ecosan toilet increases crop yields
Why do we use ecosan? They are ecological - Ecosan toilets turn what is usually regarded as waste into a safe affordable compost and fertiliser, returning valuable nutrients to the soil and ...
Felequoma appeal – Sierra Leone
Felequoma village, Barri Chiefdom, is home to 350 people, they have no toilets, clean drinking water, school or health clinic. The villagers collect water from a swamp half a kilometre outside ...
We value our volunteers
Thank you to all our volunteers, we understand how precious time is. We are incredibly grateful to anyone willing to give it up to help others, it makes a real ...
David Brackenridge cycles for ’50th’ Birthday
David is one of the founding members of BHT (Professional Surveyors and Property Agents) based in Leeds. David will be celebrating his 50th Birthday with a cycling challenge from Lands ...