Selling toilets to poor households

The challenge:

In northern Ghana, 90% of households do not have access to a toilet. Municipal sewage infrastructure does not exist. As a result, most people resort to “open defecation”, which means doing your business wherever you can find some momentary privacy – often in a field close to your home. This creates pathogens in the environment that lead to preventable illness, medical costs, lost days of work, and stunted growth in children. In northern Ghana, two out of five children are stunted. Women and girls are also exposed to the risk of sexual violence when they have to venture out alone to relieve themselves, particularly at night.  

What you’re making possible:

Sama Sama sells attractive and affordable toilets to poor households in northern Ghana. Why sell toilets rather than giving them away? Saving up for a toilet creates pride in ownership. It is more likely to be used and maintained. And the revenue we earn from selling toilets goes right back into reaching more households to sell yet more toilets. And we’re different from most other charities, who often use shame or embarrassment as triggers to encourage people to buy a toilet. Instead, we focus on peoples’ hopes and aspirations. The dignity that comes from having a household toilet. Convenience, especially for elderly or disabled members of their family. Safety, especially for women and girls. Pride, when their relatives from the city come to visit. Because of you, that “Sama Sama Feeling” is spreading throughout northern Ghana!

* The Government of Canada provides funding for this project. Additional funding is provided by the Manitoba Council for International Cooperation and individual donors.