plan 543Total Sanitation Project in Rural Village of Montegrande, Bolivia

Summary

In partnership with the Municipality of San Pedro, Etta Projects will work alongside 24 families in the village of Montegrande to construct dry ecological composting latrines.

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  • Thumb_appendix_3_list_of_participating_families
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Background

This project primarily tackles the community need of inadequate sanitation. Most families in rural areas in Bolivia have two options when it comes to sanitation: defecate in the open air or use shallow pit latrines. In other words, adults and children must choose between using the public road or fields or a dirty, overflowing latrine, while trying to avoid pests such as snakes, rodents and wasps. This situation is not only unsanitary and unsafe; it provides no privacy or dignity for the residents.

Poor sanitation produces disease such as diarrhea, stomach aches, headaches, skin rashes, cholera, and typhoid. Almost always children and women suffer the worst consequences. In Bolivia, 36% of deaths in children under age five are caused by diarrhea. Some women and girls share that it is difficult to find privacy to do their necessities, and children are often scared to use the family pit latrines due to the rodents and insects. Kids in Montegrande almost always choose to defecate outside. Photos the current sanitation situation in Montegrande can be found on a PowerPoint in the Attachments section.

Studies show that provision of safe water coupled with sanitation facilities can reduce deaths from diarrhea and other water-related illnesses by 65% and overall childhood mortality by 55%. Safe water, hygiene practices and sanitation are three of the primary drivers for improving public health. Last year, in partnership with the local municipality and Water For People, Etta Projects implemented a water project in the village of Montegrande. The results of the water project included: 100% of households having access to safe water, the formation of a local water committee, and a general decrease in water-related illnesses in the village.

Improving water supplies in Montegrande is only half the battle. The greatest reductions in diarrheal incidence are possible when improved improved water quality and hygiene practices are combined with sanitation improvements. This project aims to offer a complete WASH program in Montegrande by supporting the village to construct ecological composting latrines.

The project aims to achieve the following objectives:

1. To partner with the local municipality to construct 24 ecological composting latrines in the village of Montegrande
2. To have consistent use of the ecological bathroom from 100% of the families
3. To improve hygienic habits involving excreta disposal through latrine and bathroom use, hand-washing, food preparation and consumption, and safe water practices
4. To promote leadership skills so that sanitation promoters, community leaders and teachers can motivate, organize and mobilize people in their community to make necessary health and sanitation improvements
5. To reduce water-related illnesses including intestinal parasites, diarrhea, and scabies

Location

Montegrande, Municipality of San Pedro, Bolivia

Attachments

  • Doc Appendix...
  • Docx Appendix...
  • Pdf LAS_1.pdf
  • Pdf LAS_2.pdf
  • Pdf LAS_3.pdf
  • Pdf LAS_4.pdf
  • Pptx MONTEGRA...
  • Docx diseno_d...
  • Pptx Past_Pro...
  • Xlsx BP_Monte...
  • Xlsx monitore...
  • Xlsx MONITORE...
  • Xlsx satisfac...
  • Xlsx MONITORE...

Focus

Primary Focus: Sanitation - Households
Secondary Focus: Hygiene Education

People Getting Safe Drinking Water: 0

100% of families gained access to clean water in 2012 in a water project implemented by Etta Projects, in partnership with the local municipality and Water For People

School Children Getting Water: 0

The village school in Montegrande was connected to the distribution system, offering access to clean water to all students. 105 children live in the village.

People Getting Sanitation: 165

The project will construct dry composting latrines in 24 households in the village of Montegrande.

People Getting Other Benefits: 165

During the first phase of the project, members of the Department of Water & Sanitation from the Municipality of San Pedro will facilitate community workshops intended to raise public awareness about the consequences of poor sanitation as well as to organize and motivate villagers to participate in the project and change their current sanitation situation. Community meetings will be held with villagers to discuss sanitation and health topics such as water related illnesses, the danger of excrement, options to improve sanitation and benefits of the ecological latrine model.

Additionally villagers in Montegrande will elect two individuals to serve as sanitation promoters. The project will train the sanitation promoters with the skills and knowledge to support the participating families to correctly use and maintain their ecological composting latrines. The promoters will participate in a series of seven workshops in the following themes:
• Sanitation Promoter and Household Visits
• Waterborne Illnesses & Prevention
• Basic Sanitation and Hygiene
• Use & Maintenance of Ecological Latrines
• Instruments for M&E
• Treatment of Trash & Solid Waste Materials
• Fertilizer Produced by Eco Latrines

Sanitation Promoters will work directly with members of the municipality, and then replicate what they learn with the participating families in their village. Having promoters work directly with families will enhance project sustainability through local knowledge and will ensure that more people in each family are reached more consistently with personal training sessions between family and promoter. The local municipality will lead the implementation of the education component, and Etta Projects' staff will make monthly visits to monitor progress and impact.

Three additional workshops will be will be held at the village school for local children. Teachers and project staff will demonstrate proper hygiene methods. The workshops will focus on:

• Community Sanitation
• Proper Hand Washing
• Use & Maintenance of Ecological Latrines

Lastly the project will offer workshops intended to teach participants the latrine construction process. The workshops will include themes in: Selecting the Location of Latrine, Forming & Pouring Slab for Lower Foundation, Forming and Pouring Slab for Upper Foundation, Construction of Chambers, Building the Sub-Floor, Building Walls & Roof. By gaining an in-depth understanding of how to correctly build latrines, families are able to actively participate in the construction process.

Application Type: Project Funding

Start Date: 2014-04-01

Completion Date: 2014-09-30

Technology Used:

The ecological composting latrine is a simple, low-cost sanitation facility, with proven record of efficacy by past sanitation projects implemented by Etta Projects as well as other institutions in Bolivia such as Water For People and INCADE. The ecological composting latrines are built using locally available materials, and the beneficiaries provide much of the materials and labor.

The ecological composting latrine is built above ground and does not require permanent plumbing or water. The bathroom is built on a double vault system, with one chamber in use at any given time. A toilet seat with two holes allows for separation of urine from fecal matter. Fecal matter enters the disposal chamber where it is contained and decomposes; urine is captured separately. When this chamber is full, the toilet seat is moved to the second chamber and fecal matter in the first chamber begins the composting process. After each use of the latrine, dry material (ash or lime) is added to prevent odor, repel bugs and start decomposition. Toilet paper can be thrown into the latrine and will not disrupt decomposition. The process of alternating its usage and excavating compost must be maintained for the toilet to function properly. This model eliminates risk of fecal matter leaking into ground water.

The components of the eco- latrine include a double-vaulted base, superstructure, steps, and separate urinal and toilet. The base of the latrine consists of two separate sealed vaults with cement doors on the back side. These doors can be opened to remove the compost generated from regular bathroom use. The inside walls of the vault are coated with Sika paste, which is a common waterproof sealant used in Bolivia. Compost builds up in the vault, and is removed by opening the vault doors, which are then be closed and re-sealed with soft cement. A more detailed description with the measurements of all the latrine parts can be found in the attachment section. Also included is a PowerPoint presentation with photos of completed latrines.

Families have an option to build the outer structure from materials they have on hand or make a financial contribution to the project which will be used to purchase bricks for the superstructure. The superstructure encloses the toilets and urinals, and sits above the vault. Once the families have completed the construction of the walls, the families provide their own roof. Entry steps are built from masonry brick covered with cement paste for reinforcement and aesthetic appearance. Families often choose to decorate the exterior of their bathroom structure with colorful paint, decorations and plants.

Some families choose to install a hose buried underground to allow liquid waste to run into the ground at a safe distance. Others collect liquid waste in a bucket and dump it in an appropriate disposal site or leave the urine in the sun for a few days so that it can be used as pesticide for certain vegetation.

The eco-latrine requires modest on-going maintenance for proper operation. Dry material must be added to the vault to facilitate composting. Ash is the most widely used dry material because it is readily obtained from the wood stoves used in Bolivia. Other maintenance responsibilities include: switching the toilet from one vault to the other (usually done every 6 month to a year); stirring waste in the vault to enable proper composting; removing compost and sealing the vault for a new composting cycle. These are simple tasks and the cost is minimal.

Our experience has proven the ecological bathroom to be ideal for Eastern Bolivia. First the hot temperatures in this area allow for faster decomposition of the fecal matter. Second, because the area has shallow ground water and is prone to flooding, typical pit latrines can lead to many problems. The shallow latrines contaminate ground water and they overflow easily spreading contamination. Another benefit of the ecological latrine is that it allows families to use decomposed fecal matter for productive purposes, providing incentive for its adoption in agrarian communities. Our current projects are just reaching a point that families are emptying their vaults and some have chosen to use the compost in flowerbeds and crops. Project leaders continue to collaborate with similar organizations working in sanitation, such as INCADE and Water For People, to develop practical uses for by-products of the eco-bathrooms, such as selling compost fertilizer and growing flowers to sell commercially. We would like to see more people take advantage of the compost; however this is a slow process that takes time to be widely accepted.

There are additional environmental benefits to the ecological latrine. To accommodate the region’s high water table, the design has a sealed, above ground vault that prevents waste from escaping into the environment. This has a positive impact on the community drinking water. Less waste in the water reduces bacteria transmission, which will result in better health for children and adults in the community. Overall, this project has demonstrated that the ecological latrine is an effective and low-cost solution to rural sanitation problems and offers special incentives to people in agrarian communities.

Phases:

The project will be implemented in 5 phases:
Phase I: Organization
Phase II: Mobilization
Phase III: Training
Phase IV: Construction
Phase V: Evaluation

Please review Appendix V that shows the detailed calendar of each phase.

Community Organization:

The rural village of Montegrande is located in the 8th District of the Municipality of San Pedro, approximately 150 kilometers north of San Pedro, the capitol of the Municipality. The community is found in the Integrated North of the Department of Santa Cruz in Eastern Bolivia. Montegrande has a total population of approximately 165 people. Families live along a dirt road that runs through the center of the village. There are a total of 33 families that live at 24 households; most homes are made of wood and have thatched roofs and mud floors.

People from Montegrande come from diverse backgrounds. Although Spanish is the most common dialect spoken in the village, most people also speak either quechua and aymara.

The land surrounding Montegrande is extremely fertile and is characterized by a flat topography. Soy, rice, sugarcane and corn are the most common crops grown in the region. Some people also breed cows, pigs and sheep. The majority of the population works in agriculture.

Community members from Montegrande have proven a willingness to get involved in the project. Local leaders began its relationship with Etta Projects in 2011 by advocating for safe, reliable water. Etta Projects, with support from the Laird Norton Family Foundation and in partnership with the local municipality and Water For People, implemented a water system and helped establish a five-member Water Committee trained in installation, use and maintenance of the water system.

In order to prepare for a WASH program in Montegrande, Etta Projects conducted a needs assessment. During the assessment, we consulted the mayor, OTB President, water cooperative, School Board, and community families. We learned that currently households' current sanitation situation is made of shallow pit latrines that pose a wide variety of health risks.

The demand for the ecological latrine project in the community was raised from the following efforts:
• workshops and home visits with the community to analyze the problems of sanitation
• interviews with community leaders explaining different techniques for disposal
• Families' firsthand knowledge of the benefits of the ecological composting latrine from prior sanitation projects achieved by the municipality in neighboring communities
• After the Municipal Assembly was held in the district to prioritize and validate demand, the Mayor's Office established a budget towards their contribution of the project.

Government Interaction:

Over the past years, the local municipality has connected with organizations like Etta Projects, Water For People and INCADE to improve education, water, sanitation and health. In 2010 the Municipality of San Pedro was one of the first municipalities in Bolivia to form a Department of Water & Sanitation. Etta Projects will team with the Department of Water & Sanitation to build the latrines and implement the hygiene education program.

The Department of Water & Sanitation has been improving sanitation using the ecological composting latrine model for the past three years. The department has agreed to take an active role in the project by making a significant financial contribution to both the construction of the latrines and the education component and by offering technical support to the project as well as co-facilitating the hygiene promotion component. Municipal representatives will also support the monitoring and evaluation of project results. Etta Projects' office is approximately six hours from the isolated village making frequent visits to Montegrande difficult and costly. The municipality's active participation is necessary for this project to be successful.

By working alongside the Municipality of San Pedro and its Department of Water & Sanitation, people from Montegrande will gain further knowledge in how to develop projects and secure government resources. Local leaders will have the skills to continue to make a meaningful impact for years to come.

Ancillary activities:

Other Issues:

Maintenance Revenue:

The design of the Comprehensive Sanitation Improvement project has built-in sustainability. The construction process and the education program will be self-sustaining at the local level. Although the construction process will be supported by experienced carpenters, families will be part of the building process. The construction crew will guide the families through the construction process. At the end of the project, the families will know how to build an ecological bathroom and how to maintain it.

Each of the participating families will be responsible for the latrine’s operational and financial maintenance. Each household will provide financial resources for maintenance and upkeep of the latrines and the materials required to repair them. Dry material must be added to the vault to facilitate composting. Ash is the most widely used dry material because it is readily obtained from the wood stoves used in Bolivia. Once a month, a family member will be responsible for stirring the waste to enable proper composting. This can be done using a long piece of lumber and inserting it though the hole in the concrete where the toilet is placed. About once per year, the compost will need to be removed from the vault and spread for agricultural purposes or be disposed of elsewhere. Then the families will need to replace and seal the vaults. At this time the toilet will have to be switched to the empty side to begin the cycle over again. None of the above operational duties will require skilled labor, and the costs will be minimal.

This project is partially funded by each family, enhancing their contribution and giving them a larger stake in the sustainability of their latrine. This will encourage them to maintain and repair their latrine as described above.

Both the Municipality and Etta Projects will continue supporting the project after it is implemented by making routine visits to the villages to provide ongoing technical and educational support.

The bricks to be used for the latrine construction are locally manufactured assuring that the material will be available to the participants. Our initial latrine design has a projected life of 20 years, making it economically sustainable in the long run. Most often land is inherited from one family member to another, therefore the ecological bathroom potentially could improve the sanitation issues in these communities for generations to come.

Maintenance Cost: $3

Metrics:

The project has established a system to measure results that includes indicators and monitoring & evaluation tools. Please review the logical framework located on Section 3 of Appendix 4: Eco Latrine Project in Montegrande .

Cost: $18,125

Please see Project Budget

Co Funding Amount: $7,249

The Municipality of San Pedro has agreed to contribute to all areas of this project; including construction materials, hygiene promotion, technical support and transportation. Funding towards this project has been set aside in the district's annual operating plan. Please see Appendix 1 Project Budget for details of the local government's contribution and Appendix 2 for a signed letter confirming their participation.

Community Contribution Amount: $4,011

The community will make both in-kind and financial contributions to the project. Their contribution includes manual work in constructing the latrine, plus the materials for the roof. A list of the participating families can be found in the Attachments section.

Fund Requested: $6,865

Implementing Organization: Department of Water & Sanitation of the Municipality of San Pedro

Etta Projects is partnering with the Department of Water & Sanitation of the Municipality of San Pedro. The municipality has been constructing ecological composting latrines for the past three years in coordination with various nonprofit organizations. During this time, they have developed a sustainable system of monitoring and evaluating the empowerment of the participating families. The department has currently assigned three technicians to support their efforts of total sanitation in this area.

Attachments

  • Doc Appendix...
  • Docx Appendix...
  • Pdf LAS_1.pdf
  • Pdf LAS_2.pdf
  • Pdf LAS_3.pdf
  • Pdf LAS_4.pdf
  • Pptx MONTEGRA...
  • Docx diseno_d...
  • Pptx Past_Pro...
  • Xlsx BP_Monte...
  • Xlsx monitore...
  • Xlsx MONITORE...
  • Xlsx satisfac...
  • Xlsx MONITORE...
  • 2 participants | show more

    Regarding sanitation coverage & issue related to women & girls

    Sandeep Srivastava of Shohratgarh Environmental Society (SES)

    Dear Etta Team, It is great effort by you people.I would like following things?? 1. What is sanitation coverage of selected village?? before proposing , have you done any survey regarding this?? 2. Apart from privacy , how does poor sanitation affect women & girl?? Thanks, Sandeep Srivastava

    Dear Etta Team,

    It is great effort by you people.I would like following things??

    1. What is sanitation coverage of selected village?? before proposing , have you done any survey regarding this??
    2. Apart from privacy , how does poor sanitation affect women & girl??

    Thanks,
    Sandeep Srivastava

    • Katie Chandler of Etta Projects

      Hi Sandeep, Thanks for the great questions. In response to the first question, Montegrande has a total population of 165 residents and 33 households, with an average population density of 5 members per family (24 families live in the community permanently and those will be included in the project). All but one household that is particip...

      Hi Sandeep,
      Thanks for the great questions. In response to the first question, Montegrande has a total population of 165 residents and 33 households, with an average population density of 5 members per family (24 families live in the community permanently and those will be included in the project). All but one household that is participating in the project currently has a shallow pit latrine (the other family does not have any sanitation system). The school and the government post also have pit latrines. Some members of families, especially children, stated they rather go to the bathroom outside than in the family’s pit latrine. Many students said the same about the school latrine. Pit latrines users reported lack of satisfaction due to (in order of common responses): foul smells, problems with fecal matter overflowing, problems with collapsing latrines during the rainy season, high number of mosquitoes and bugs, inability for small children to utilize the latrine, lack of sustainability, ground water contamination, and embarrassment or shame. Etta Projects made house visits to each family to receive this data (The appendix section includes a pp presentation of photos of the current sanitation situation taken during the assessment).
      In response to the second question, the problem of poor sanitation negatively impacting girls is prevalent throughout the developing world, including rural Bolivia. The lack of a sanitary bathroom is one reason for the discrepancy between the genders since privacy is considered a greater necessity for girls than boys. Female students are often embarrassed to enter the bathrooms and will hold in bodily excrement. Holding in urine can lead to health consequences such as: bladder infections, kidney disease, and importantly for female students, Urinary Tract Infections (UTI). UTIs can lead to pain while urinating, chills, fevers, vomiting and nausea. As in many rural areas, families in Montegrande often lack access to medical care or the financial resources need to purchase antibiotics for these diseases. Female students who do choose to enter the bathrooms are at risk for additional infection. Again, students are at risk of contracting UTIs. Students may also catch infections from fecal matter which may be left in the bathrooms for long periods of times. Males, due to the lack of direct contact with the toilet, are at a much lesser risk of contracting infections.
      The municipality of San Pedro is currently implementing a separate project aimed at improving school bathrooms which includes the school pit latrines in Montegrande. Once the people of Montegrande have a safe, private place to do their necessities both at home and at school, we believe that there will be a tremendous impact on the overall health of the community.

  • 2 participants | show more

    Metrics (and photos)

    Rajesh Shah of Peer Water Exchange

    I downloaded all your documents and have gone thru them. The photos and plans can be uploaded in our image gallery where its easier to view and even search for the title. You can still do it as it will help compare project results with this photo 'baseline'. I also went thru section 3, but found only milestones, not metrics. In your ppt...

    I downloaded all your documents and have gone thru them. The photos and plans can be uploaded in our image gallery where its easier to view and even search for the title. You can still do it as it will help compare project results with this photo 'baseline'.

    I also went thru section 3, but found only milestones, not metrics. In your ppt there are some better metrics that you seem to be tracking monthly. What will you monitor on an ongoing basis - the same? Things that might fluctuate:
    - # of toilets being used (?)
    - odour
    - pits filling up and shift to other (good one)?
    - amount contributed and tracking until full payment is recovered.

    Thanks,
    Rajesh

    • Katie Chandler of Etta Projects

      Hi Rajesh, Thanks for the tip regarding how to best upload the photos. Our staff in Bolivia constantly sends groups of photos in a word document or in a power point presentation. I guess it is very timely for them to upload pictures as individual photos due to the slow internet service in the area. They found it to be a lot easier to s...

      Hi Rajesh,
      Thanks for the tip regarding how to best upload the photos. Our staff in Bolivia constantly sends groups of photos in a word document or in a power point presentation. I guess it is very timely for them to upload pictures as individual photos due to the slow internet service in the area. They found it to be a lot easier to send them in a single document. I agree with you though, it would be much easier to view and search if we used the image gallery. I will try figure this out.
      In response to your question regarding tracking, we do track using metrics. The sanitation promoters make weekly house visits (and use a red-yellow-green light system) to measure correct use & maintenance. Project staff accompany the promoters regularly to triangulate results. Indicators that are measured include: odor, maintenance, existence of dry material; closed toilet lids, correct time/method of emptying chamber and resealing small door, existence of hand-washing station and soap, etc. We also test change of knowledge and overall satisfaction of the program and the latrines. I uploaded some of our tools to the attachment section.
      Thanks!

  • 3 participants | show more

    Eco-San Toilet

    Juergen Puetz of PALMYRA

    Dear Sir, The proposed activity is covered all parameters for effective implementation in the rural area. You can do the compost test, to ensure the quality of the eco-san compost, before apply it in the the agriculture field

    Dear Sir,

    The proposed activity is covered all parameters for effective implementation in the rural area.

    You can do the compost test, to ensure the quality of the eco-san compost, before apply it in the the agriculture field

    • Katie Chandler of Etta Projects

      Hi Juergen, You're absolutely right. We ran a series of tests on samples of the compost, which the results showed no observations of parasites. I attached a copy of an example test in the attachment section. We work in an ideal location for the eco latrine due to the high temperatures year round. We understand the risks related to u...

      Hi Juergen,

      You're absolutely right. We ran a series of tests on samples of the compost, which the results showed no observations of parasites. I attached a copy of an example test in the attachment section. We work in an ideal location for the eco latrine due to the high temperatures year round. We understand the risks related to using the fertilizers and stress in the training section that the latrines need to be used correctly in order for the compost to be safe for productive use.

      Thanks!

    • Varalakshmi VS of Aa Foundation for Community Development

      The proposal has all the details,have you implemented similar programmes earlier?

      The proposal has all the details,have you implemented similar programmes earlier?

    • Katie Chandler of Etta Projects

      Yes, we piloted the latrine project in 2011. Our first year we constructed 63 latrines. In 2012 we completed 45 more. This year we are projected to construct 70 latrines. For the past two years we have been working in the same district, with the goal of leaving the district with 100% coverage.

      Yes, we piloted the latrine project in 2011. Our first year we constructed 63 latrines. In 2012 we completed 45 more. This year we are projected to construct 70 latrines. For the past two years we have been working in the same district, with the goal of leaving the district with 100% coverage.

  • 3 participants | show more

    Needs assessment, consultative process and handwashing

    Hélène Lefebvre of 1001 fontaines

    Dear Etta projects team, Thank you for this interesting proposal. It is great that Etta Projects is able to implement a sanitation solution in the same place where a water supply project was conducted last year. It would be interesting to evaluate the impact on people’s health of the water intervention, and then of the water+latrines in...

    Dear Etta projects team,

    Thank you for this interesting proposal. It is great that Etta Projects is able to implement a sanitation solution in the same place where a water supply project was conducted last year. It would be interesting to evaluate the impact on people’s health of the water intervention, and then of the water+latrines intervention.

    The proposal mentions that a comprehensive needs assessment through consultation of local communities preceded the project. Could you elaborate on this issue, especially the different techniques for sanitation and excreta disposal that were presented to the communities and how their choice were informed?

    A second question, linked to the first one, would be about the acceptance of the project by villagers. I don’t have a comprehensive experience on sanitation as our organization works only on safe drinking water but I’ve heard colleagues from the WASH sector arguing that it is often hard to make sanitation product aspirational. So my first reaction is to wonder if people are comfortable with the project (e.g. the fact of having to remove the waste from the latrines every 6 months, or the risk of bad smell especially when temperatures are high). Obviously the situation prior to the this intervention was much worse, but anyway did you find reluctance or unease among beneficiaries and if so, how did you address it? Your feedback on how to make the latrines “user-friendly” would be quite interesting here.

    Hand-washing is mentioned in one of the attachments, but there is not great detail about it so that is also one if your activities I would like to learn about.

    Thanks and regards
    Helene

    • Katie Chandler of Etta Projects

      Hi Helene, Thanks for the great feedback and questions. We appreciate the dialogue. As far as community consultation, during Etta Projects’ work with community members from Monte Grande in the 2012 water project, sanitation was a central theme in the community hygiene promotion workshops. Community members learned how the spread of con...

      Hi Helene,
      Thanks for the great feedback and questions. We appreciate the dialogue. As far as community consultation, during Etta Projects’ work with community members from Monte Grande in the 2012 water project, sanitation was a central theme in the community hygiene promotion workshops. Community members learned how the spread of contamination leads to illness and during the process began expressing a desire to change the sanitation situation in their village (our workshops used interactive mapping activities, SARAR, puppets, and role play to make these issues easy to talk about). We discussed with the community the advantages and disadvantages of a pit latrine and the ecological composting latrine, two of the most commonly used models in the Municipality of San Pedro. Etta Projects brought members of the local water committee to two nearby villages to show variations in the eco latrine model. Once the community decided on advancing forward with a sanitation project (using a double-chamber model), community leaders participated in a municipal assembly in order to direct funding from the village’s annual operating budget (POA) towards this project. Only community leaders have the decision making power to decide how this funding is used. For us, choosing a sanitation project is an impressive indicator of community input and backing towards this project.
      In response to your second question, Etta Projects works towards securing community buy-in through a series of workshops geared at different members of the community. Our sanitation program includes community workshops, children’s workshops and sanitation promoter workshops, all highlighting the importance of proper use and maintenance of the latrines. Additionally, Etta Projects brings samples of the compost to the villages. Families are surprised to find that the compost is odorless dirt, and not foul smelling fecal matter. I believe this is important way to increase comfort in emptying the chamber. We also bring samples of plants we grow with compost from ecological latrines and compare those with plants that do not use the compost. Families are able to visually see the benefits of the compost. Lastly, Etta Projects remains connected to the villages after the project cycle is completed to make certain they are removing the waste, using dry materials, keeping the lid down, etc. The sanitation promoters make weekly house visits (and use a red-yellow-green light system that families understand) to measure correct use & maintenance. Project staff accompany the promoters regularly to verify results. These visits are a way to check in and motivate change of any bad habits if necessary.
      Handwashing: Etta Projects incorporates hand washing into all our programs by training communities like Montegrande of its importance and impact on community health. For Etta Projects hand washing is not simply teaching participants to memorize steps in hand washing; instead we encourage families to think about why hand washing is important or how and why contamination can spread throughout a community and the consequences it has on one’s health. We put knowledge into practice through the construction of tippy taps- simple and highly economical technology to encourage hand washing in rural areas that do not have faucets near their latrines. In our sanitation program, children played an important role in the construction of tippy taps and in promoting them in their households. The kids connected soap-on-a-rope or soap nets to the tippy taps, bringing together soap and water. We also provide an opportunity to practice hand washing by ensuring all participants wash their hands before attending project workshops and before eating snacks served during project activities.

      Thanks again for the great questions. Let me know if you have any other doubts regarding the project!

    • Hélène Lefebvre of 1001 fontaines

      Hi Katie, thanks for your comprehensive reply to my questions and those raised by other participants. I particularly value the fact that Etta favours dialogue with beneficiary communities at all stages of the project; it's a component that everyone recognizes as crucial but few project implementors actually take enough time to implement...

      Hi Katie,

      thanks for your comprehensive reply to my questions and those raised by other participants. I particularly value the fact that Etta favours dialogue with beneficiary communities at all stages of the project; it's a component that everyone recognizes as crucial but few project implementors actually take enough time to implement.

      You gave details on the way Etta measures correct use & maintenance of the ecological latrines, with regular visits and use of a red-yellow-green light system to make things clearer. This is great and I am curious about the results of this monitoring and measuring procedures. Could you provide some info about project uptake and other learnings you got for previous projects? Thanks!

      Helene

    • Katie Chandler of Etta Projects

      Hi Helene, Etta Projects monitors monthly a random sample of completed latrines in the 7 villages where we have worked (often the sanitation promoters support us with our evaluation efforts). We use the red/yellow/green light system, which is user-friendly and minimally burdensome. We measure a number of specific items, and then categ...

      Hi Helene,

      Etta Projects monitors monthly a random sample of completed latrines in the 7 villages where we have worked (often the sanitation promoters support us with our evaluation efforts). We use the red/yellow/green light system, which is user-friendly and minimally burdensome. We measure a number of specific items, and then categorize the items into three larger categories: 1.) Availability of Necessary Materials for Proper Function (dry materials, toilet paper/newspaper, stir stick, place to wash hands), 2.) Correct Usage (toilet lid down, presence of dry material in chamber, consistent stirring, paper in chamber and not on floor, empty chamber on time, reseal small cement door, etc.) , and 3.) No Bad Odors.

      Our most recent results are recorded over a nine month period. Most months about 50 household latrines were monitored. A summary of the results are as follows:
      1.) Availability of Necessary Materials for Proper Function: low month- 70%; high month- 91%; avgerage -85%
      2.) Correct Usage: low month-85%; high month-93%; average-89.5%
      3.) No bad odors: low month-83%; high month-92%; average- 88%

      One of the most important things we have learned is that families have to invest and show interest before starting the construction. The eco latrine model is too expensive to invest in a family that will not put it to use. EP has set up a series of requirements that serve as indicators to ensure a family’s interest before starting. Some examples include partial payment of families’ contribution and attendance at the training workshops (the construction does not begin until the project has given 4 workshops). If a family is not meeting these requirements, we’ve learned they are less likely to complete their latrine or to maintain it properly. Also under our model, some families choose to supply their own local materials to build their walls (to reduce their overall contribution) and all families have to put on the roof of the latrines. Families should secure these materials before starting the construction. If the materials are not readily available, families often lose interest.

      Please let me know if you would like to more information. Thanks again for the great questions!

    • Rajesh Shah of Blue Planet Network

      Hi, Last minute interjection! Happy to work with Etta to create metrics to track these indicators. They are in some ways better than the ones put in the Appendix. Also, i think that your motivational and educational materials need to be shared better. Its nice to mention them, but maybe we need to create a forum where all the differe...

      Hi,

      Last minute interjection! Happy to work with Etta to create metrics to track these indicators. They are in some ways better than the ones put in the Appendix.

      Also, i think that your motivational and educational materials need to be shared better. Its nice to mention them, but maybe we need to create a forum where all the different practices of the members can be showcased. For example, in India, we have had villagers take a trip to another place where they can see with their own eyes the toilets, their use, and their compost.

      Regards,
      Rajesh

    • Katie Chandler of Etta Projects

      Hi Rajesh, We would love to work with you to create better metrics. This is something we are trying to do internally, but I would love your guidance and recommendations! I will request copies of our manuals and pamphlets from our staff tomorrow so that we can share them in the attachments section. We also take villagers to communit...

      Hi Rajesh,

      We would love to work with you to create better metrics. This is something we are trying to do internally, but I would love your guidance and recommendations!

      I will request copies of our manuals and pamphlets from our staff tomorrow so that we can share them in the attachments section. We also take villagers to communities where we already implemented the project so they can talk to families, see/use the latrines, see if there are odors, observe the compost, etc. In both the Municipality of San Pedro and Minero (where we have been implementing the program for a number of years) the eco latrine is a popular model for sanitation projects which allows for their field trips pretty easily. We often make visits to neighborly villages, host focus groups with sanitation promoters and host district meetings for people to share experience.

      Please let me know if you would any additional information.

      Thanks,
      Katie

  • 4 participants | show more

    Funding provided by familiies

    Rosemary O'Mahony of 1001 fontaines

    Katie, this is a very impressive project from several perspectives -from the innovative latrines themselves to the use of a comprehensive series of workshops to promote usage of the latrines and changes hygiene behaviours. In addition to improving sanitation for the whole village, it seems like the project should deliver other important ...

    Katie, this is a very impressive project from several perspectives -from the innovative latrines themselves to the use of a comprehensive series of workshops to promote usage of the latrines and changes hygiene behaviours. In addition to improving sanitation for the whole village, it seems like the project should deliver other important benefits in terms of reducing bacteriological contamination in water sources, providing ecologically friendly fertilisers and promoting pride in the keeping the surrounding areas clean and beautiful, as you illustrated in your "before" and "after" pictures.

    It is very good that the families themselves have to make some financial contribution. How much is this per family in terms of USD and % of income? What if any initial resistance to such contributions did you encounter and how did you overcome them ?

    Thank you and best wishes. Rosemary.

    • Julie Smith of Lifewater International

      Katie, just as Rosemary and Helene have commented, this seems like a very well-thought through and time-tested strategy for improving sanitation in Montegrande. Thank you for the clear and detailed program plan. My questions echo Rosemary's regarding the significant community contribution- how have families worked to overcome this in your ...

      Katie, just as Rosemary and Helene have commented, this seems like a very well-thought through and time-tested strategy for improving sanitation in Montegrande. Thank you for the clear and detailed program plan. My questions echo Rosemary's regarding the significant community contribution- how have families worked to overcome this in your past projects? Do families with the lowest-income have any options for improved sanitation or do they generally still practice open defecation?

    • Katie Chandler of Etta Projects

      Hi Julie and Rosemary, Thank you for the great feedback. We really appreciate the dialogue! Under Etta Projects’ model, families contribute approximately $50 to the base of the latrine, as well as manual labor in latrine construction and the roof of the latrine (which can be made from local materials). We offer families different opt...

      Hi Julie and Rosemary,

      Thank you for the great feedback. We really appreciate the dialogue!
      Under Etta Projects’ model, families contribute approximately $50 to the base of the latrine, as well as manual labor in latrine construction and the roof of the latrine (which can be made from local materials). We offer families different options to fulfill their contributions, allowing any family who wants to participate in the project and who can actively engage in the project activities the option to do so. Some strategies we have in place to help families who have extremely limited resources include:
      • Flexible payment plans. Families have to contribute 50 Bs ($7.35 USD) to begin construction (this proves an investment in the project). After that, we work with families to set a payment plan that is comfortable for them.
      • Families can opt out of constructing brick walls and instead build the walls of the latrine out of local materials (such as mud bricks). In this case, their contribution is reduced by 100 Bs. Out of 100+ latrines, we have had about a dozen choose to build their own walls.
      • Families can work as assistant brick layers for their project instead of making a financial contribution. They are required to work 3.5 days in order to work off the full financial contribution.
      Under this model, in almost all rural villages where we work, we leave a village with 100% sanitation coverage.
      The project in Monte Grande takes on the model used by the local Municipality of San Pedro, which increases the contribution from families about $25 more than we normally have them contribute (at the same time, the entire model is slightly more expensive than the one we offer mainly because it includes a more sophisticated piping system for the urine to leave the chambers and includes a double-holed porcelain toilet). Etta Projects will make certain we offer the strategies mentioned above to allow all interested families the option to participate.
      I hope this helped clear up your concerns. Let me know if you have any additional questions. Thanks again!

    • Rosemary O'Mahony of 1001 fontaines

      Dear Kate, Thank for this very comprehensive response. It is very instructive to hear about the very many flexible options that you can offer to families to make their contributions in a variety of ways, such that everyone has the opportunity to participate and gain access to a latrine. Best wishes. Rosemary

      Dear Kate,

      Thank for this very comprehensive response. It is very instructive to hear about the very many flexible options that you can offer to families to make their contributions in a variety of ways, such that everyone has the opportunity to participate and gain access to a latrine.

      Best wishes. Rosemary

    • Julie Smith of Lifewater International

      Katie, thank you for your clarification and best of luck to your program!

      Katie, thank you for your clarification and best of luck to your program!

    • Hélène Lefebvre of 1001 fontaines

      Hi Katie, As I am reading the instructive replies you provided to the questions raised here, I am wondering what is the average revenue per family in the region of Montegrande. This is just to have a clear picture of the context. Thanks a lot, Helene

      Hi Katie,
      As I am reading the instructive replies you provided to the questions raised here, I am wondering what is the average revenue per family in the region of Montegrande. This is just to have a clear picture of the context.
      Thanks a lot,
      Helene

    • Katie Chandler of Etta Projects

      Hi Helene, The majority of the families dedicate their work to agriculture, mostly producing beans and sugarcane. According to a needs assessment, the average salary is about 700 Bolivianos (or $100 USD). This fluctuates higher and lower throughout the different seasons. We recognize that is important to work with community members dur...

      Hi Helene,
      The majority of the families dedicate their work to agriculture, mostly producing beans and sugarcane. According to a needs assessment, the average salary is about 700 Bolivianos (or $100 USD). This fluctuates higher and lower throughout the different seasons. We recognize that is important to work with community members during the planning phase so they understand their financial contribution and have the time to prepare and save. It’s also important to be flexible to the realities of real life and create a plan that is feasible for each family.
      Thanks!

  • Rating: 9

    review by (only shown to members)

    This project pursues clearly identified objectives and presents a very interesting and valuable technical and social engineering, with a comprehensive amount of information and useful technical attachments provideed by the implementer.
    It would be great to have more details on the expected health and sanitary impact that is expected (Will health indicators be monitored in the long run and how?).
    We wish the best to this project and hope to hear about it on the BPN.

  • Rating: 7

    review by (only shown to members)

    Good project, The details of failure is previous project can be provided, and information on participation of the governance is needed, you have community support which is positive.
    best wishes.

  • Rating: 8

    review by (only shown to members)

    Great program. Just need better list of indicators to be tracked, which i believe Etta is ready to and has the ability to do and the process ready.

  • Rating: 10

    review by (only shown to members)

    Excellent program with detailed answers on questions brought up by other users. Etta Projects seems to have found a community-accepted method of improved sanitation which builds community ownership. Water has already been provided, and sanitation and hygiene are incorporated into this phase.

  • Rating: 9

    review by (only shown to members)

    May share your experience in use of human dry compost for agriculture use.

    Thanks,

    Dhanam

  • Rating: 8

    review by (only shown to members)

    Very well designed programme. Should be considered .

  • Not Reviewed

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