plan 564Double pit VIP latrines in Las Trincheras, Camoapa


68 families have need of adequate sanitation; Families will build 54 VIDP (Double pit VIP) latrines.


Las Trincheras is a rural community about 13 km from the town of Camoapa. Trincheras means trenches - the community was founded during the Revolution war in the 1980s and was meant to be able to dig in to defend Camoapa.

The people of Las Trincheras work mainly as subsistence farmers and a couple of people have a cow or two and can sell milk. Some people also work as day-laborers on occasion. The estimated monthly income per family is $56US.

Most families do not have any sanitation facilities and those that do have facilities in poor conditions. 13 families do have latrines built by Ayuda en Acción. Those that do not have latrines use the nearby fields or borrow latrines from their few neighbors that have them.

They are motivated to improve their situation and approached El Porvenir for support to build latrines. They are willing to contribute the labor to dig the holes, line the holes, and build the exterior structures. They have also committed to contribute monetarily towards the project cost at least 10% of the materials cost, in kind or cash.


Las Trincheras, Camoapa, Nicaragua


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Primary Focus: Sanitation - Households
Secondary Focus: Hygiene Education

People Getting Safe Drinking Water: 0

In this community, El Porvenir helped rehabilitate a well in the school in 2010 benefitting 105 students and nearby community members.

School Children Getting Water: 0

See above.

People Getting Sanitation: 282

68 families
54 homes
123 females
55 children under 5

The data source for this information came from interviews with community leaders during the feasibility evaluation.

People Getting Other Benefits: 282

Hygiene and sanitary education workshops will be carried out to ensure improved health in the community as well as proper use and maintenance of latrines. Through the construction of the project, masonry skills are acquired that will help with the long term maintenance. Special emphasis will be given to the rotation of the pits: emptying them safely, moving the superstructure and continual use of drying material in the pits. Continuing hygiene education related to the previous well project will continue as well.

Start Date: 2013-10-30

Completion Date: 2014-04-30

Technology Used:

El Porvenir has over 20 years of experience helping rural Nicaraguan communities build appropriate technology (wells, latrines, community washing stations, and fuel efficient stoves) as well as providing communities with the tools they need to manage their water, sanitation and forestry resources. The methodology of El Porvenir is based on three key principles: (a) community empowerment through active participation and ownership in all aspects of the project, (b) creation of sustainable organizations in the community to manage resources in the long term, and (c) focus on appropriate technology made from low-cost locally available materials that can be maintained by the community. El Porvenir projects are demand driven, i.e. the local office of all Nicaraguan staff responds to requests from the community. Once staff verifies the need and feasability of the project. Funds are sought. The municipal authorities and the local community also contributes towards project materials usually by purchasing or collecting local materials. When the remaining funds are available, the construction phase can begin. The community learns how to build and maintain sanitation infrastructure themselves. -Construction materiales are purchased and transported to the community by truck and animals -El Porvenir provides training and technical assistance to the community in construction, maintenance and repair of latrines -The community builds latrines (hand dig two pits per latrine to depth of 6 feet/2 meters, line with rocks, bricks or stones, install precast concrete slab and box seat, create walls and roof from zinc panels, install ventilation tube). These latrines are part of a pilot double-pit VIP latrine program (the standard for Nicaragua at this time are single pit VIP latrines which are of questionable value in terms of sustainability once the pit fills). The superstructure shells are made of zinc and metal, so as to be easily reused (and moved) when the first pit fills. In a similar way, both pits can be reused as one fills. In pilots, we have found the cost to be approximately 20% more than the single pit model (except in the very early models) and provides 33% more volume initially. The first pilots have had several families switch to the second empty pit and back to the first pit successfully.


This is a one phase project.

Community Organization:

The beneficiaries have met with the El Porvenir Promoter and agreed to carry out, use, and maintain the latrines as per the 10 norms on the use of latrines. This includes keeping them in good condition, preventing contamination of the surrounding area, and understanding how this will improve their overall health. The community will be trained in community organizing techniques and will have a potable water and sanitation committee functioning. El Porvenir uses a train the trainer technique to diffuse information in the community. Latrines are built on the property of each family, so each family owns their own latrine through their labor of building it. Community ownership is felt by the community through its identification of its problem, request of the solution, their monetary contribution (at least 10%) and their involvement in the sweat equity of the project.

Government Interaction:

El Porvenir has signed MOUs with our municipal governments. In the case of Camoapa, the government supports the project materials cost at 15%.

Ancillary activities:

Health and hygiene education: The community learns how to reduce water and sanitation related illnesses through good hygiene practices. -Identify and train local hygiene and health promoters from the community to reinforce hygiene trainings on an ongoing basis -Carry out household visits and community workshops to help the community to identify risky behaviors and learn good hygiene practices. Topics covered include: Definition of hygiene, 10 rules for using latrines, Why sanitation is important, Water and sanitation related diseases, The cycle of contamination, Why hand-washing is important, How to maintain and dispose of garbage, How to use and maintain wells and community washing stations, How to treat and use water, Sources of water contamination, Role and responsibilities of Community Water and Sanitation Committee members and the Importance of planting trees. -Create and air health and hygiene announcements on local radio stations to reinforce community health learning and to reach a larger audience. -Organize community clean up days to reinforce training about environmental sanitation and waste management -Collect data from local clinics and health centers on incidence of water and sanitation related diseases (diarrhea, skin infections etc.)

Other Issues:

In order to measure the impact of our projects, we collect data several times a year from clinics serving rural districts where we have a high concentration of projects: number of visits due to diarrhea, etc. As the number decreases we feel that hygiene education has been effective. In previous years, the data seemed to support this hypothesis, although the Ministry of Health has changed their data collection methodology unfortunately, and now the data is not consistent. For more information on the double pit latrine initiative, please see the discussion, simplistic design document and photos at:

Maintenance Revenue:

The health and hygiene education program is described in more detail above and this is our key to ongoing sustainability. The cost for El Porvenir is this ongoing program.

Maintenance Cost: $100


Our sanitation metrics that we measure are: 1. Municipal coverage for sustainable sanitation %. (Baseline from May 2013: 60% in San Lorenzo, to be confirmed) 2. % contribution from the community towards the project. (expect minimum 10%) 3. Reduction in WASH related illnesses (diarrhea) in the municipality, but since this has been difficult to measure with confidence, we use a proxy measure: presence of fecal coliforms in water sources (Petrifilm or other measuring source). #1 may not make much sense in this context, as that is a measure we are looking at every 3-5 years.

Cost: $32,821

See Attachment in Excel.

Co Funding Amount: $12,773

Rotary (fairly certain)

Community Contribution Amount: $7,034

This includes community labor and the municipal contribution.

Fund Requested: $13,013


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    Inherit review

    Rajesh Shah of Peer Water Exchange

    This proposal is similar to proposal by EP and will inherit the Q&A and the ratings of that one.

    This proposal is similar to proposal by EP and will inherit the Q&A and the ratings of that one.

  • Not Reviewed

    by Peer Water Exchange

Name Status Completion Date Final Cost
Double pit VIP latrines in Las Trincheras, Camoapa pending Jun 2014 0