Previous Sanitation Drivers


Connecting Countries Adopt-a-School


A chance meeting at Toronto’s Pearson International Airport in March 2005 between John P. Smith and elite runner Joseph Nderitu led to the birth of Connecting Countries Adopt-a-School (CCAAS). When Joseph shared stories of the poor sanitation conditions in schools from his Kenyan homeland, John felt moved to invite Joseph to his middle school to speak to his students. A few of John’s students reacted by mobilizing the entire school to take action to improve school sanitation in Kenya. This outreach school project was a huge success and has grown into a respected registered Canadian charitable organization. CCAAS’ purpose is “to promote the education of our children in Kenya and Canada through the support of projects designed to improve the quality of educational environments in Kenyan public schools”. In order to support this vision, CCAAS strongly believes in the need for improved water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) in schools. To date CCAAS has built 151 VIP latrines at 9 Kenyan primary schools, servicing close to 4000 school children each year within the Nyandarua County of Kenya, installed Roof Water Harvesting infrastructure at 3 Kenyan primary schools with a fourth scheduled to be completed by the end of April 2015 and; and, and built over 20 hand washing stations allowing 4 Kenyan primary schools to practice personal hygiene.



Mark Balla-Founder of We Can’t Wait


In 2013 Mark Balla founded “We Cant Wait”, a charity using the School Lead Total Sanitation approach to bring toilets to schools in need of improved sanitation. We Can’t Wait focuses on bringing improved sanitation to schools, as they believe “educating girls is the most effective way to improve an entire country”. In order to identify the most appropriate sanitation technology for each school setting, We Can’t Wait collects data using guidelines set out in the World Health Organization publication “Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Standards for Schools in Low-cost Settings”. In collaboration with local partners and sanitation experts, assessments of findings are used to select a suitable sanitation solution for the school in question.



Arsh Mogre – #ArshCampaign


Arsh Mogre, a 15-year-old student from Mumbai, India has long been interested in political affairs. With India’s new Prime Minister Narenda Modi launching the “Clean India Campaign” Arsh is determined to see citizens take action towards improving sanitation. Arsh believes that “in order to have successful government, citizens need to support social activities, and establish trust with their leaders.” Arsh is working to bring politicians, celebrities, and citizens together to raise awareness about the importance of sanitation. Using social media Arsh is reaching out to his community and supporting increased participation in improving sanitation. Join us in following his campaign. Follow @Sanitation2015 and watch for #ArshCampaign.



Leadership through Education and Action Foundation (LEAF)


Founded in 2004, the  Leadership through Education and Action Foundation (LEAF) is working in the Namakkal district of Tamilnadu India to promote safe sanitation practices and management. LEAF’s programs capitalize on women and children as community agents of change. LEAF works with the women of communities to develop water and sanitation societies in order to educate members, and promote savings for sanitation facility infrastructure. Concurrently, LEAF develops and uses innovative tools and techniques in primary school curriculum to encourage safe sanitation practices of children. Women and children’s changed attitudes towards sanitation then infiltrate the surrounding community. With successful attitudinal shifts amongst a community towards improved sanitation, LEAF supports behaviour change and newfound demands for sanitation facilities by providing loans for the development of infrastructure. Members of women’s water and sanitation societies are eligible for loans. While LEAF supports the development of facilities that are reflective of beneficiaries’ needs and financial situations, they typically encourage the development of leach pit latrines.


Rajeev Kher, Founder of 3S India


Rajeev Kher is a Sanitation Driver because of his unaltered focus on bringing dignity to people’s lives by providing them with affordable sanitation facilities. In 1999, Rajeev founded 3S, a Saraplast Enterprise. 3S is a pioneering sanitation service provider in India working with NGOs, municipalities and companies to set up portable toilets in un-served locations such as slums, construction sites, and events. The 3S business model for urban slums is based on registered households paying a monthly fee for use, plus a pay-per-use model for guest users. In 2012, 3S provided over 200,000 people with access to toilets in India—of which 130,000 were first-time toilet users, and 50,000 were women and young girls. Rajeev was the first Asian to serve on the Board of Directors of Portable Sanitation Association International (PSAI) from 2010-2013. In recognition of his efforts in the field of sanitation, CNN-IBN awarded his organization with the INDIA POSITIVE AWARD, 2012. From his experience, Rajeev believes that if you honestly work for an important cause, you will find many supporters! For more information on 3S’s work click here. 


Prahlad, I.M., Research Assistant at SOCHARA


Prahlad I.M. works within the Environmental Sanitation department of the Society for Community Health Awareness Research and Action (SOCHARA) to improve sanitation conditions in rural areas of Karnataka, India. To improve the sanitation situation, SOCHARA focuses on sanitation related behaviour change and empowering communities to take action towards improving sanitation conditions. In achieving sanitation goals, SOCHARA mobilizes communities using the Community Led Total Sanitation approach, trains community members as masons and sanitation leaders, provides water and sanitation related educational resources, conducts research, and assists communities in mobilizing resources for sanitation facility construction. Prahlad I.M. has been instrumental in this work, and reports efforts to improve sanitation conditions as having seen great success. Some lessons learned Prahlad I.M. wishes to share are to ensure sanitation technologies are appropriately designed to the availability of community resources, and that collaboration between relevant sectors is vital to the sustainability of improved sanitation conditions. For more information on SOCHARA’s work click here. 


Namita Banka, Founder and CEO of Banka BioLoo


Namita has been working relentlessly towards the cause of effective sanitation and the eradication of open defecation. She is working with and promoting the bio-digester technology developed by DRDO, India. These toilets treat human waste on the spot, without degrading the environment. The system has been very effective in the areas where these have been installed. The practice of open defecation has stopped in small parts of India where bio-toilets have been installed. Namita has realized that women want proper toilets and are willing to do the necessary work to obtain/build them if they are provided with appropriate guidance.


Nancy Santullo, Executive Director of Rainforest Flow, Peru

Nancy and Rainforest Flow develop and implement low tech -community driven WASH programming for remote indigenous cultures in the Manu Rainforest of the southeastern Peruvian Amazon. Clean water flows to each village home, the school and medical post. Eco-friendly bathrooms (separate sides for the boys and girls) are installed at the village school and health and hygiene education is reinforced over three to five years with mothers and children. In their pilot village, chronic diarrhea dropped 45% and the most dangerous parasites dropped 94% in just three years. These advances are monumental for indigenous people and the project now serves as a replicable model for the region.


Rinchen Wangdi, Chief Engineer, Ministry of Health in Bhutan


Mr. Wangdi works for the Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Programme of Bhutan. Even though Bhutan has over 90% coverage in basic sanitation, the improved sanitation coverage is just above 54%; for this reason, the government programme stepped up its effort to meet the MDG Target by 2015. Since 2008, Bhutan in collaboration with SNV initiated the Rural Sanitation & Hygiene Programme in one of the remotest districts of Lhuntse. They later extended the programme to Pemagatshel district in 2011. The approach has been successful and the two districts now have improved sanitation coverage of over 95%. Based on the learning experiences from the two districts, Bhutan will now scale the programme nationwide. Through this project, they have learned to give greater consideration to: (1) community participation; (2) cost-effective technologies; (3) pro-poor strategies; (4) supply chain management; and (5) sustainable behavior change.


H.E. Ms. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, President of the Republic of Liberia


H.E. Ms. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf is the President of the Republic of Liberia and was jointly awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for acknowledgement of her role in the “non-violent struggle for the safety of women and for women’s rights to full participation in peace-building work.”  She also Chairs the African Leaders Malaria Alliance (ALMA), and is serving a second two-year term as the Goodwill Ambassador for Water, Sanitation and Hygiene in Africa. In January 2012, President Sirleaf signed the Liberia WASH Compact, a product of the Sanitation and Water for All (SWA) Partnership aimed at ensuring that the Liberian population can have adequate access to safe water and improved sanitation facilities. President Sirleaf believes that the WASH Compact will stimulate action in the WASH sector, resulting in improvements in access to safe water and sanitation for the people of Liberia. In January 2013, President Sirleaf co-chaired the UN Secretary-General’s High-level Panel of Eminent Persons on the Post-2015 Development Agenda.  Moreover, President Sirleaf has been recognized for her leadership skills, ranked among the top 100 most powerful women in the world (Forbes 2012); the first most powerful woman in Africa (Forbes Africa 2011); among top 10 female leaders (TIME 2010); and was called “the best President the country has ever had” (The Economist 2010).Click here to watch the President’s acceptance speech.


Public Toilets Project in Naivasha, Kenya


EU-SIDA-GTZ EcoSan Promotion Project aimed to improve the living conditions of residents and travelers using the bus station. This project’s goal is to find a business oriented solution to create economic incentive for the water sector. A public sanitation facility and water kiosk were constructed at the bus park, which is located in the town center. The facility consists of toilets, hand-washing basins, a urinal and showers. The wastewater drained from the facility goes into an underground biogas plant that treats wastewater and the treated effluent is discharged to the sewer. On average 5-20 people come to use the toilets at a time during bus stops.  The reduction of organic loading due to the anaerobic digester helps protect Lake Naivashsa from contamination. When sludge is removed once a year it is used as fertilizer. Moreover, the biogas produced is used for cooking at a nearby café. The outcomes of this project are sustainable sanitation and development for the Naivasha area.  For further information on this sanitation driver, click here.


Tachila Nature Reserve Trust in Botswana 


Tachila Nature Reserve is promoting the achievement of sanitation and hygiene for all in Botswana. They will be installing environmentally friendly sanitation units at their new education park that is set to open in July 2012. Recognizing the water scarcity issue in the country, Tachila understood the need for water saving technologies. This triggered their mission to install an anaerobic sanitation system. The system will save tens of thousands of litres of water, which will help to alleviate current pressure on the country’s ground water reserves.  This is a more sustainable alternative to flush toilets, which use a major proportion of the country’s freshwater supply. The system was designed and developed in Botswana.  This supports the economy because local residents are employed in the manufacturing of the system. Tachila is now working with local and international partners to implement this technology in other remote areas in Botswana. In addition to promoting a green technological solution, the education centre will work to raise awareness on environmental issues. Children from a local school have assisted in this effort by painting the facility to tell the story of water.