Improved latrines to sustain sanitation and hygiene efforts in Busia County

Emmanuel Midida demonstrates how to construct a SAFI latrine. KIWASH is reaching out to communities to let them know about their options to improve their latrines and training hardware owners and local artisans in construction and installation methods.Since 2015, all villages in Busia County have been certified as open defecation free. This means that most households use a latrine and wash their hands after visiting the toilet. However, households with a simple pit latrine still suffer with bad smells and flies and are at risk of waterborne diseases. Moreover, in parts of the county where the soil is loose, latrines run the risk of collapsing.

To address these challenges and intensify sanitation and hygiene efforts, KIWASH, along with the county government and the Ministry of Health, are taking steps to promote safe and affordable improvements for pit latrines. Two options are the SATO pan, which has a unique self-sealing trap door that closes quickly, seals tightly, and can be fitted to an existing latrine, and the SAFI (Kiswahili for “clean”) latrine, which has concrete walls designed to withstand soil pressure and prevent structures from collapsing. Both options eliminate smell and flies for improved hygiene.

KIWASH is reaching out to communities in Busia County with sanitation information and training hardware owners and local artisans in the construction of both types of latrines. Most recently, at the Port-Victoria Hospital in Busia County, local artisans from Bunyala Sub-County benefited from practical demonstrations on developing the improved sanitation products.

Alfred Mbira is one of the trainee artisans. While he participates in the practical demonstrations, he is pleasantly surprised to learn that he can install a SATO pan to an existing toilet in under 30 minutes, make some money, and help to put an end to diseases spread by flies and germs. Of the improved latrine, he says, “The SATO pan is clean, affordable and easy to install. I am confident that the community will take it up because the benefits are high and the costs are low.”

One of the trainers, 28-year-old Emmanuel Midida, learned how to construct the SAFI latrine in 2015. So far, he has trained 400 artisans and personally installed more than 130 SAFI latrines. He knows only too well its benefits. “The SAFI latrine is safe, durable, cost effective, and uses readily available materials,” he said.

From the training, each artisan will install one of the improved latrines within his own household. As they install the latrines in their communities, they will also confirm that their clients have a hand washing facility. When there is not one existing, they will install one at no cost.

The Busia County Executive for Health, Madam Phaustine Barasa, only wishes the community had learned of the improved latrines much earlier. “The improved options are brilliant for communities, especially those that have had challenges with cholera. Their very ability to keep out flies and trap smells is impressive. This will definitely help to improve the health of people in my county,” she said.

Be the first to comment

Please check your e-mail for a link to activate your account.


Kiwash Blog

Frida Musyoka, the revenue clerk and project manager at the Kithambangii Water Project (KWP) in Kitui County, is passionate about her job. She describes it...
Like many slums and shantytowns worldwide, water in the Kibera area of Nairobi is scarce, costly, unreliable and contaminated. The largest slum in East Africa,...
For years, the Sivilia Primary School struggled to provide water to its students. The school is in hilly Navakholo village in Kakamega County. “The school...

Subscribe to our Newsletter


Contact Us

Mobile: +254 790 999 072
Mobile: +254 780 999 070
Email: info@kiwash.org

Address: UN Crescent, Gigiri
P.O Box 1863 - 00621
Nairobi, Kenya

The Kenya Integrated Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene Project (KIWASH) - Nairobi, Kenya - info@kiwash.org. This website is made possible by the support of the American People through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID.) The contents of this website are the sole responsibility of DAI and do not necessarily reflect the views of USAID or the United States Government. For more information review our Privacy Policy and Disclaimer. This website contains cookies like quantcast and chartbeat. They allow NationBuilder to monitor user activity in order to make improvements to the website. Involuntary personal information is not gathered or shared. Users can disable these cookies to prevent tracking user activity.