SOIL is busy these days! In Port-au-Prince, the office is buzzing with plans for rolling out the EkoLakay service, and in Cap-Haitien, SOIL staff are working at full speed to build and install over 100 household toilets every month. To keep up with these exciting developments, we need your help to meet five specific needs: new uniforms, improving our solar-power system, purchasing a new Poopmobile moto, grinding cover material to "flush" our toilets, and installing a solar-powered water pump.
All of these activities are critical to the smooth and efficient scale-up of ...
Schools need toilets.
This may sound like a no-brainer, but the reality is that many schools in Haiti, and elsewhere in developing countries, lack safe, private, dignified places for students to go to the bathroom. According to Human Rights Watch, in Haiti "most students and teachers have nowhere to relieve themselves, wash their hands with soap, obtain clean water, or, for women and girls, maintain menstruation hygiene. Where facilities do exist, they may not be sufficient in number, may not function, or may not be clean or safe. Nearly 60 percent of schools lack ...
"The man next to me on the bus strikes up a conversation during a rare smooth section of road from Port-au-Prince to Cap Haitien.
“Are you a missionary?”
“Do you work for a NGO?”
“Then why the heck are you in Haiti?!”
He’s not surprised that I want to visit Haiti – in fact, he thinks Haiti is supremely beautiful. He is shocked, however, because almost all Westerners in Haiti work for either missionary or aid organizations.
"You wait on a street corner, taking in the lush tropical scenery and the colorful clothing of the locals. It’s hard to believe that only a few months ago you were still in school, frantically trying to finish your reading for the week’s classes and wondering if you’d ever be able to submit your thesis on time. For a brief moment you totally forget the heat and the noise of your current location and you think back to your tranquil, leafy campus. You imagine running into a friend in the tree-lined circle outside your lecture hall or stopping by a professor’s musty ...
"We know how important toilets are in the fight against water contamination and diarrheal disease. But because of infrastructure and cost, conventional toilets don’t always work in developing countries – and as a result, 35% of the world’s population to lack access to basic, working toilets.
"To get the fuel she needed to cook her food and warm her home, Kenyan Nancy Wambui, 54, used to buy charcoal made from chopped-down trees. But recently, she was given a new set of briquettes to try, that looked just like regular charcoal but worked even better. The secret ingredient? Human poop.
“They took a long time to burn off, so you could cook and then still have heat to heat hot water for bathing,” she said of her first experience using the new fuel.
You may have read that SOIL is excited to launch our EkoLakay service in Port-au-Prince in the coming weeks, and if you’ve been a fan of SOIL for a while, you know that this has been a long time coming! But if you’re new around here, you may not know what all the fuss is about! Here’s the rundown on a few questions you might have:
Um, what IS "EkoLakay"?
Simply put, EkoLakay is the social business model that SOIL is piloting to develop an ecologically and economically sustainable solution to the problem of sanitation access in Haiti. The brand name EkoLakay comes ...
"'Given this natural aversion to human waste, it takes rigorous research, careful implementation and skillful social marketing to overcome the ‘yuck’ factor,' says Kramer. 'That said, we found that, in Haiti, once people are able to see, smell and touch the final product they are more than eager to test it in their gardens.'
SOIL in The Guardian