Press Release: First Sustainable Sanitation Conference to be held June 12-13, 2012 in Pétion-ville, Port-au-Prince, Haiti

The Sustainable Sanitation Conference, hosted by SOIL and UNICEF, will raise awareness of positive progress and best practices for sustainable sanitation solutions in Haiti, where lack of sanitation continues to fuel cholera epidemic.

SOIL (Sustainable Organic Integrated Livelihoods), a leader in ecological sanitation, is proud to announce that the first ever Sustainable Sanitation Conference will be held Tuesday and Wednesday, June 12th and 13th, 2012 at the Ritz Kinam II Hotel, Pétion-ville, Haiti. The conference aims to highlight the positive progress and best practices in sustainable sanitation as well as address ongoing challenges to effective and permanent sanitation in Haiti, including the fight against the ongoing cholera epidemic. This two-day conference is open to the public; a registration fee of $25 USD includes lunch and refreshments. Contact SOIL (info(at)oursoil.org) to learn more.

SOIL, in partnership with UNICEF, is hosting the first Sustainable Sanitation Conference in Haiti in order to provide a forum for the exchange of ideas, lessons-learned, and development of national standards for sanitation provision. The agenda includes information sessions by DINEPA, sanitation practitioners and community groups. Presenters and attendees are encouraged to bring kits, equipment or materials relevant to the workshop. Innovative latrine slabs or toilet systems, superstructure kits, waste treatment technologies, hand-washing devices, promotional materials and other items for demonstration will be on display.

[box]”SOIL has been providing ecological and sustainable sanitation solutions in Haiti for nearly 7 years. We are happy to be joined, in the past two years, by a large number of organizations and initiatives that involve composting toilets and bio-systems that prevent sanitation-related illness and death and transform human wastes into a valuable resource”, said Dr. Sasha Kramer, SOIL’s Executive Director. “These environmental solutions to Haiti’s sanitation problem have proven to be low-cost, effective and popularly received, and it is now time to take this success to scale with an annual conference dedicated to information sharing, accountability and implementation”.[/box]

In Haiti, only one out of ten people in rural areas and one of four in urban areas have access to improved sanitation. Without access to toilets, untreated waste flushes or leaches into rivers and waterways it mixes with water used for drinking or bathing. This lack of access to sanitation is the key reason cholera quickly turned into an epidemic after it first appeared in Haiti in late 2010. The cholera epidemic has thus far, claimed nearly 7,000 lives. The government and international organizations are challenged to coordinate and finance long-term sanitation solutions, while communities around Haiti have set an internationally recognized precedent for overcoming constraints with low-cost, locally-built sustainable sanitation solutions. SOIL and its co-sponsors of the National Sustainable Sanitation Conference seek to highlight their successes and develop a blue print for taking them to scale. Attend the first National Sustainable Sanitation Conference June 12th-13th, in Port-au-Price, or pledge your support for sustainable sanitation at http://www.oursoil.org. Follow the conference proceedings on Facebook or Twitter (@SOILHaiti).

About SOIL:

SOIL is a US 501c3 grassroots organization working in Haiti to facilitate the community-identified priority of ecological sanitation (EcoSan), where human wastes are converted into valuable fertilizer. EcoSan simultaneously tackles some of Haiti’s toughest challenges – providing improved sanitation to people who would otherwise have no access to a toilet and producing rich organic compost critical for agriculture and reforestation. Since building Haiti’s first EcoSan toilet in 2006, SOIL has gone on to become one of the country’s largest sanitation providers.

Conference Logistics:

SOIL Haiti Logo B&W

Website:

http://www.oursoil.org/sustainable-sanitation-conference-haiti/

Date:

Tuesday and Wednesday, June 12th and 13th, 2012

Location:

Ritz Kinam II Hotel, Pétion-ville, Haiti.

Objective:

Share knowledge and experience about current trends in excreta and waste disposal, in emergency, transitional and development contexts, and to reach common understanding on possible approaches for increasing access to sanitation services in Haiti.

Agenda:

The conference is divided into two thematic days:
Day 1: Information sharing, where we will look at DINEPA´s strategy for sanitation sector in Haiti, and share experiences from selected field practitioners and communities, through presentations and question & answer sessions.
Day 2: Explore options for making sanitation solutions more sustainable and more demand driven, with a plenary discussion panel to examine issues related to the longer-term management aspects of sanitation services.

Sponsorship:

The National Sustainable Sanitation Conference is in need of sponsors! Organizations and companies are encouraged to email info(at)oursoil.org to learn more about sponsorship opportunities. All sponsors will be included on marketing and public relations material.

Presentations and Exhibitions:

Agencies are encouraged to present abstracts of their sanitation work in Haiti, and to highlight the long-term management arrangements in place. Potential presenters or exhibitors should send their abstracts to Corinne Coe at SOIL- ccoe(at)oursoil.org.

Attendance:

Attendance is limited, and a maximum number of places will be set for individual organizations. Please email info(at)oursoil.org to receive a registration form. The deadline to register is Wednesday, June 6th.

Cost:

The registration fee, which includes lunch and refreshments during the two-day conference, is $25 USD per individual and $500 USD per corporation (i.e. any for-profit business or individual representing a business; maximum two people per corporation). Payment may be made by cash or check (payable to “SOIL”) on June 12st during registration. Presenters and Conference Sponsors attend free.

Accommodations:

Attendees may make accommodations at the Conference location, the Ritz Kinam II Hotel, Pétion-ville. A reduced conference rate is offered by the Trinity Lodge Guesthouse, Delmas 75 to conference attendees, please indicate your participation in the National Sustainable Sanitation Conference when making reservations.

Media:

Media Inquires should be be directed to Ann Marie Bochika, the conference media sponsor, annmarie(at)bochika.org. Original press release posted on PR Web.


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