Defecation postures #SquattyPotty

With the release of this “behind-the-scenes”-video of the #SquattyPotty-commercial, it’s probably safe to call this the BEST COMMERCIAL EVER. On WASH products, at least.

And here’s the result:

What I really like about the SquattyPotty and similar products is that it helps to combine both squatting vs. sitting worlds which we’ve covered here on the forum of the Sustainable Sanitation Alliance a few years ago. Toilet cultures may differ around the world, but if a cute unicorn muppet and poop = ice cream help in conveying the message of healthier defecation, then I am instantly sold for such a product.

Now, where do I get this SquattyPotty here in Germany? Edit: found a similar solution.

(When this video hit the interwebz a month ago, some of my friends instantly asked me via FB where they could buy this product. Unicorns, man. Works.)

How to use a toilet, Wilbur Sargunaraj style

Yeah, we all love travelling, but how about the sanitary facilities at your destination? Will there be enough toilets? And will I be able to use them?

Famous YouTube star* Wilbur Sargunaraj from India, probably best known for his “Love Marriage” parody or the recent collaboration with NPR for “Dunk-A-Chicken“, offers a bit of help by explaining the use of some different toilet systems for a first class toilet experience:

Squatting toilet and manual anal cleansing with water, in “the” India:

Squatting toilet and manual anal cleansing with leaves or old paper (“What if there is no water?” – “Well, you uhmm….”), Uganda:

Pedestal (sitting) toilet and automatic anal cleansing with water, in Japan

(so desu ne!)

Pedestal (sitting) toilet and manual anal cleansing with water, in the EU:

And, as a bonus, a pedestal (sitting) toilet with manual anal cleansing using paper towels – on an Airbus A380-800:

(btw: did you know that most bowls for these vacuum toilet seats come from the same manufacturer?

Not enough? Here’s from from Wilbur – enjoy!

(* i.e. “Performing Artist and global ambassador for Cultural Intelligence“)

No toilet, no wedding

Kenya-based video journalist Ruud Elmendorp recently produced this short trailer (on behalf of Waste.NL) on a young woman that refuses to marry her boyfriend – until his family builds a proper toilet:

The story is about a boy who is in love with the daughter of a school teacher. Much to the dismay of his father, she refuses because she finds their toilet unusable and refused to have to go to the bush for defecation.

The women’s group has filed a number of complaints due to poor sanitation and present this to the village chief, incidentally the uncle of the boy. He is quite amazed by this and decides to call the government sanitation adviser.

After an animated session with the villagers and the chief, many decide to go for suitable toilets. The film ends happily with the girl accepting the marriage proposal as the sanitation issues have been solved.

Ruud regularly produces interesting video material from East Africa that we have also featured on AfriGadget, btw.

Sustainable Sanitation and Water Management Toolbox

The Sustainable Sanitation and Water Management Toolbox (SSWM) is an online resource that helps in finding an answer to the following core question: What kind of processes, measures or tools can I use to optimize my local sanitation and water management system and make it more sustainable?

sswm toolbox website screenshot

This very fine and recently launched website is said to be “the most comprehensive collection of tools and approaches to improve water resources management sanitation at a local level”, because:

  • It follows a holistic and cross-sectoral approach
  • It addresses and integrates different stakeholders
  • It contains understandable and manageable contents
  • It is user and problem specific
  • It has a high standard and pedagogic approach
  • It links planning, software and technology
  • It provides ready-to-use and adjustable material

In addition to this toolbox, there are regular training courses that build on the SSWM Toolbox and aim at linking up sustainable sanitation, water management and agriculture at the local level and in practice. Upcoming training courses will take place in Nagarkot (Kathmandu), Nepal and Pune, India.

Also, I am particularly pleased that material published in the SSWM Toolbox for the first time is attributed with a CC-BY-3.0 licence which shows that online knowledge management is indeed possible with such a (modern) copyleft licence.

Who Gives A Crap

The good part about running a blog instead of being a journalist is that you can write about stuff you really like and also insert your own opinion as well as asking your readers for their comments. This obviously happens outside the conventional (dev aid) world with its often streamlined, corporate communication policies which sometimes avoid mentioning open issues like the following initiative which I read about today in the recommendable EcoSanRes mailing list.

If you’re interested in sustainable sanitation issues, make sure not to miss out this valuable exchange on first hand experiences with participants from all over the world. Yes, it’s just an old-fashioned mailing list that will sometimes clog up your inbox, but it’s the tool people use to communicate (hello 2010, hello RSS feeds, hello blogs, hello Facebook, hello Twitter, hello LinkedIn/Xing…). Continue reading “Who Gives A Crap”