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From Open Defecation to Improved Sanitation: Create appropriate sanitation facilities to solve women's health and safety issues such as poor hygiene and risk of rapes in Antintorona, Madagascar

One of the main cause of illnesses and death in Nosy Komba, a small island located northwest Madagascar, is diarrhoea. Less than 5% of the population of this area have the access to sanitation facilities so there are not better options available than the open defecation. Open defecation is the most important cause of water pollution which spreads diarrhoeal diseases. Women have to face other big problems: -the fear concerning the risk of rape, it is dangerous to go in the forest alone to defecate, even more at night; -personal hygiene, it is crucial for women mostly during their period or pregnancy. The project consists in creating adequate household sanitation systems which help to decrease illnesses and women's safe.

Photo of Edoardo Bono
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After we met, got to know and made interviews with the community of Antintorona, we believe in a complete success of the project that is shared and required by all the community.
The locals expressed the need to have appropriate sanitation facilities that will solve all the problems they have to deal with. Because of that , the results will be immediate and tangible also with the help of educational programs about the correct use and maintenance of the toilets which are expected from the project.
The team is working on different parts of the project: architectonic, logistic, educational, crowdfunding. In july we will go to Antintorona to start to realize the first prototypes of toilets.

Explain your idea in one sentence.

The main idea consists in building appropriate household sanitation facilities to solve women's safety and healthy issues that concern open defecation, which is still the only option in Nosy Komba, as in the northwestern part of Madagascar.

What is the need you are trying to solve?

Lots of women are raped because of open defecation. Unfortunately it is common that something bad happens while they reach a place to defecate. It is usually a place far from their huts such as the forest, isolated and often very dark. Considering the fact that the community don't have electricity, after the sunset there isn't light anymore so it becomes even more dangerous and scaring for women to satisfy their physiological needs. Another problem strongly linked to this lack, is the premature drop of school by the girls caused by their feeling of shame and uneasiness during their period. By abandoning schools, girls are forced to stay at home and work not having the opportunity to study.

Who will benefit from this idea and how would you monitor its success?

The goal is to build toilets for each house and improve sanitary conditions at school. All the community will benefit from this project, especially women for their own natural necessities. The idea of the project was born after various conversations with the locals, who expressed the need to have appropriate sanitation facilities that will solve all the problems they have to deal with. Because of that , the results will be immediate and tangible also with the help of educational programs about the correct use and maintenance of the toilets.

Who would be best equipped to implement this idea in the real world? You? Your organisation? Another organisation or entity?

The idea is implemented by my association, still under construction, that will be called "H4O, Help for Optimism" born to realize this specific project on sanitation. The team is composed by different and complementary professional profiles. Each of them is taking care about specific part of the project within their own competence. To achieve the best realization, there will be a local project manager who will organize the workforce that will be made of people from the village.

Where should this idea be implemented?

The place where the project will be realized is Antintorona, one of the biggest village of the island of Nosy Komba, north west of Madagascar. This village has about 550 inhabitants of the 4500 circa of Nosy Komba, which is subdivided in other 5 villages of the same size. Unlike other villages in Nosy Komba, Antintorona is well organized: there is a school, a vegetable community garden and there are several accesses to potable water. For these reasons Antintorona is seen as a model village so this innovation could be exported in other villages in the rest of the island and in all the northwestern part of Madagascar.

How might you prototype this idea and test some of the assumptions behind it?

A small number of toilets were already built in some new huts around the island therefore the technique of construction was already tested. After we met, got to know and made interviews with the community of Antintorona, we believe in a complete success of the project that is shared and required by all the community. In July the team will go to Antintorona to start to realize the prototype of toilets that will be built in houses.

What might a day in the life of a community member interacting with your idea look like?

Women will be the firsts members of the community to experience this innovation and benefit from it right after, leaving behind the fear and danger of rape and uncomfortable situations. As the girls , they will have the opportunity to continue to go to school during their period and to have the correct hygiene
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Team (2)

Edoardo's profile
Julieta's profile
Julieta Abrigana

Role added on team:

"I am very interested in your project and i would like to have some more details about it..I am willing as well to help the lifestyle of the community with practical solutions !"

72 comments

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Photo of Francesco La Rizza
Team

Great project Edo!!! Good luck...and we are here to support you and your idea!

Photo of Rebecca Plofker
Team

Have you looked at sanergy (http://saner.gy/) as potential partner?

Photo of Riccardo Garrone
Team

Simple ideas could be the most effective! This doesn't mean that it is an easy task...Congrats Edo and good luck !!!

Photo of Gianmarco
Team

Hi Edo! Congrats for this great idea. I strongly believe this is the most viable, simple and reliable project so far. The new sanitation system will certainly improve hygene conditions within the village, and in a further step, within the whole island. Life for women in Nosy Komba will be easier and safer. Good Luck!

Photo of Rapudo Hawi
Team

Ed, I found this idea simply great....I am waiting to see its translation into a reality. While working through I noted that sanitation if not well managed affect women safety.

Photo of Francesco Napoli
Team

Such a simple great idea behind this project. Offer one hand to these countries means offer the other one to ours and finally start growing up a mindset that we should all link together and make the world we live in a better place for everybody. I feel really grateful. All my respect and support. Congrats!!!

Photo of José Pinto
Team

Hello, Edo :)
We've been speaking about this project since the beggining and the idea now sounds to me a simple and a powerfull way to empower girls and women in the community. Congratulations, Edo!

What if you can do some educational programs about Gender Equality? I mean, where there is such inequality, for instance, in girls leaving school so soon in their lives to work, I think it could be usefull to teach girls and even women to protect themselves more.

The case of been raped is due, in part, to unempowered women. And so, why not putting them in a corporative of women, where they can disscuss chances of work in something and sell it locally and online?

What about teaching Healthy Behaviours, such as cleaning hands and cleaning "stopped waters", to prevent other diseases?

And what about the prototype you've been making? Will it be done for sustainable use? Did you think about an ecological way to make it function not only for better hygiene, but to feed the earth and the fields?

Here to help and to share ideas.
Greetings from Portugal!

Photo of Julieta Abrigana
Team

Hi, Edoardo. Greetings from Asia, the Philippines. I wish to be part of your team as I find the problem in your place very real and your solution practical But if you may allow me to share our experience in helping eliminate source of filthy odor, we are now producing natural liquid formula to spray on the area diluted with water. In this regard I am willing to share your group our experience in Davao City, Philippines as regard treating the surroundings swamped with animal wastes.

Photo of Edoardo Bono
Team

Hello Julieta, greetings to you from Italy!I am very interested in your project and i would like to have some more details about it..I am willing as well to help the lifestyle of the community with practical solutions ! Thanks a lot and keep supporting us !

Photo of Federica Grignolo
Team

Bravo Edo! Great project! Good luck and keep us posted! =)

Photo of erika glionna
Team

I hope that everybody understand the relevance of this project, because it would really change the life of many people!
Thank you to have the idea and the will to realize something like this.
Good Luck Edo

Photo of Chioma Ume
Team

Hi Edoardo, great project idea!

I'm interested to know, how did you decide to equip each home with their own facility versus other sanitation models? Or are there other models that you will be testing?

Your mention of girls and access to education reminded me of a few other responses to this challenge: http://www.openideo.com/challenge/womens-safety/applause/menstruation-matters-upower
http://www.openideo.com/challenge/womens-safety/applause/real-woman

Have you thought of adding an educational component (about hygiene, or sanitation, for example) to your project? These other initiatives might give you some ideas...

Good luck!

Photo of Edoardo Bono
Team

Hi Chioma, thanks a lot for the interesting comment you left !!
The idea was born after a request from of the community to have a toilet inside the house for a domestic use of it.
The toilet as a part of their own home would make them fully advantage and get the benefits of a private use of it and it would surely help the maintenance.
Talking about the construction techniques, we would use the on-site sanitation models and we will soon upload some sketches we made!

We think that the two ideas you suggested us, are very interesting and about crucial topics as well we could surely get in contact to join our ideas!

About the educational part we would like to make the project complete with some specific educational programs that we are still working on. While looking at the other ideas about it to implement our project, we found this interesting sanitation game:
http://www.openideo.com/challenge/how-can-we-improve-sanitation-and-better-manage-human-waste-in-low-income-urban-communities/inspiration/making-sanitation-a-game-

What do you think about it ?
Edoardo.

Photo of Jasmine Burton
Team

Hey Edoardo! This is an incredible idea that I too am passionate about! I actually have been working with a team in tandem with the CDC to implement inexpensive mobile sanitation solutions throughout the developing world for the past few months. We begin our pilot in Kenya this summer! I would love to collaborate with you on your toilet project as the sanitation community is very tightly connected since everyone is working towards the same goal. My team's toilet company/project can be found here: http://www.safichoo.com/. I would love to hear your feedback and potentially collaborate in the future!

Photo of Costanza Cappella
Team

This is an incredible project! Glad to see increasing social entrepreneurship activities!! Good Luck!!!

Photo of Alessandro Mario
Team

just in time!!!!!!!!!!!

Photo of Chioma Ume
Team

Hi Edoardo, it's great to hear that you are considering so many angles in this project. I'd never seen that game before, but it's an awesome idea to get children to be advocates for projects in their communities. I bet you might get some interesting suggestions for how to adapt strategies like these from the youth of Nosy Komba. If I come across any other ideas for this, I'll be sure to share!

Photo of Karolle Rabarison
Team

Manao ahoana Tompoko o! Izao aho voa nahita an'ity idée ity, dia faly be hoe mba mahita hoe misy idée pour une communauté Malagasy ato amin'ny ity OpenIDEO challenge ity.

You mention that you've started building a few toilets in the area. Could you tell us a little bit more about the design you implemented? And what has been the community response so far?

There's also a previous OpenIDEO challenge that focused on sanitation that might provide some inspiration as you take this initiative forward, adapting to the specific situation of women in Antintorona.
http://openideo.com/challenge/how-can-we-improve-sanitation-and-better-manage-human-waste-in-low-income-urban-communities/brief.html

Photo of Oana Toma
Team

Complimenti

Photo of Marina López
Team

What I really like of this idea is that you can implement it everywhere. Congrats!

Photo of Tommaso M. Fabbri
Team

Edo, well done, your project tackles a severe problem for people in Nosy Komba and it does so very rationally and straightforward: talking to the community, testing of the solution, implementation. As a stakeholder of this challenge I would suggest you keep somehow track of the women's perceptions while sanitation facilities are gradually introduces and put into use. Best.

Photo of Michael St.Germain
Team

Excellent targeting of problem.

Photo of Congmin Liang
Team

"the fear concerning the risk of rape, it is dangerous to go in the forest alone to defecate, even more at night." It is really dangerous thing that all the women need to care about. In some sparsely populated places or forest, it didn't provide a restroom for people to defecate. But if people need to go to defecate without any restroom in some special cases, they have to go in there and do it. We don't know what it has inside the forest, which is really make people nervous and afraid. I think the government need to provide some restroom over there just in case some people need it for their safety.

Photo of Edoardo Bono
Team

Thanks a lot Congmin, You got it right, that's exactly what our goal is !!
It is unacceptable that there are still limits and fears concerning something so basic such as fundamental needs.
Unfortunately ideas, funds and concrete projects very often have to be searched outside the local government.
That's why we are working hard to make this project become true within the help of everyone who is willing to give us new ideas and support !!
So you are very welcome to keep in touch with us...

Photo of michele aruanno
Team

nice challenge. this is true design. all the rest, and especially the architecture of archistars is (as a famous song say..) "boredom and noise," and when the noise increases we need to go back to the origins of our soul and our physical and passionate to resolve really primary and important problems with a good "design thinking" approch. edo is good openideo is big. good luck !
gtp-turin-italy, design factory, michele aruanno architect

Photo of Edoardo Bono
Team

Thanks Michele. We share your point of view: it is necessary to begin from the bases to reach concrete results ! In our team there are some architects and designers that are working and focusing in order to find and improve the best solutions to solve the lack of sanitation in the smartest way .
Obviously we are still waiting for advices and collaborations...
keep supporting and follow us !!

Photo of Pablo Paffo
Team

I think that this might be the best idea in the whole challenge! Congratulations to the ideator and good luck! Greetings from Valencia, Pablo.

Photo of Edoardo Bono
Team

Thanks for your support from Spain :) it's nice to see that we are supported from all over the world !!

Photo of Rafael Carabano
Team

Edoardo this is a great idea. I hope it can be implemented fully

Photo of Edoardo Bono
Team

Thanks a lot Rafael, we also hope to find as many contacts as possible to implement our idea in order to realize it!

Photo of Michele SantaFe
Team

Big up Edo!

Photo of Josè Mariachi Sin Bigote
Team

great idea!

Photo of Ana Cláudia Amaro
Team

Ciao Edo. Congratulations on this great humanitary project! Best wishes from Portugal :)

Photo of Luca Cafasso
Team

Being born in a western country make you forget the importance of having tap clean water or a properly working toilet. Because we have this privileges they easily become insignificant in our life, but they are actually what really makes it better! Keep fighting!

Photo of antonio frascà
Team

this looks like a wonderful project, i hope you'll manage to win this challenge, good luck edoardo!

Photo of Michele Pulcher
Team

unacceptable that little girls are forced to drop out the school for this trivial reason.
keep goin on!

Photo of Luca Dal Pozzolo
Team

A VERY GOOD PROJECT! GOOD LUKY FROM EMANUELA LUCA MARCO DAL POZZOLO

Photo of Edoardo Bono
Team

Thanks a lot, we will do our best !! continue supporting us ! :)

Photo of Rodrigo Muñoz
Team

Excelente proyecto !! Espero que se pueda realizar lo antes posible, sería factible también en ciertas zonas de Venezuela !

Photo of Edoardo Bono
Team

muchisimas gracias, esto es el primero proyecto y luego nos esperamos de replicar el resultado en otros sitios y para otros pueblos. Desafortunatamente las toilettes faltan todavia en muchos sitios en todo el mundo!
Gracias por el suporto venezolano !!!

Photo of Roberto Bono
Team

every project aimed to increased hygiene and Public Health promotion is a project to encourage! This in particular.
Dr. Roberto Bono Ph.D
Professor of Envionmental Health and Hygiene

Photo of Edoardo Bono
Team

Thanks to encourage our project giving your support! We would be grateful to receive some advices and more support .

Photo of Francesca Tabasso
Team

great project! I wish you the best!

Photo of Edoardo Bono
Team

Thanks a lot, we will do our best !

Photo of daniela dlponte
Team

From your photo you look like a joung man and I am, as an older lady, very sensitive to the conditions of the women that lives in Africa. I make you my compliments and I wish you a great success for your important project.

Photo of Edoardo Bono
Team

Thanks a lot Daniela, I am a young man sensitive too for the women issues and bad conditions of life. Sanitation for women is one of the most important there in Madagascar as in the whole Africa !! Starting from the little realities, we can reach the biggest :)
Support us and follow our work !!

Photo of Anna Maria Righini
Team

Fantastic project. I hope success for you and for Antintorona's womens.

Photo of Edoardo Bono
Team

thanks a lot Anna. Indeed women from Antintorona, Nosy Komba, and all the north-west part of Madagascar don't have basic services !!
Support us and it will come true !!

Photo of Laura Onofri
Team

And' a beautiful project that helps particularly the women!

Photo of Edoardo Bono
Team

Thanks a lot Laura, we're doing our best to improve the situation for the women and obvusly for the whole comunity !
continue supporting us !!

Photo of Enrico Vitolo
Team

Very good job and great idea! It's really important to improve sanitary conditions in places that don't have many possibilities to grow up safly without "our" help. One more time, good job my friend!

Photo of Ramon Braga
Team

Hello Edoardo! This is an excellent idea. So many people living in a hard situation and without sources. I am very glad to know that this project is taking shape. All the best wishes from Brazil, good luck !!!

Photo of tomaso
Team

Great idea guys! Sanitation, waste management, health, and gender are among the most sensitive problems throughout the world. And small villages are the best places where to start implementing innovative projects! May your ideas turn into reality soon!

Photo of Andrea Serapioni
Team

Keep up the great work.

Photo of Andrea Galea
Team

Grande!

Photo of Chiara Cirillo
Team

Grande Edo! Great project, always supporting you

Photo of Chiara Paglialonga
Team

great and helpful project! Hope it could be supported more and more! :)

Photo of Yuki Liu
Team

Great project!! Root for you!

Photo of Julia Armand
Team

This is an amazing project with a HUGE relevance! Thank you for trying to make the world a better place for all these women. Best of lucks from Venezuela!

Photo of Edoardo Bono
Team

Thanks a lot !! support us and our project !! :)

Photo of Simone Migliaro
Team

Grande Edo!!

Photo of Lorenzo Lampitelli
Team

Great Edo!
I'm proud there are guys like you with great ideas who are trying to improve the word..
Anazing project! Good luck!

Photo of Alessandro Ahmad
Team

Great Idea! I support you!

Photo of milo cuniberto
Team

C'mon Edo!
I really appreciate this help to those people!
Go on!

Photo of Andrea Bonassi
Team

really happy to help you,edo!good project!

Photo of Alexandra M
Team

Great job, Edoardo!! keep going with the great work. Kisses and hugs, my friend :) Good luck!!!

Photo of Anya Ow
Team

Safe access to sanitation is definitely important! :) Maybe you could try partnering with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation - they've been looking at sanitation and recently headed a Reinvent the Toilet Fair in India, about bringing safe, affordable sanitation to a large demographic. http://www.gatesfoundation.org/What-We-Do/Global-Development/Reinvent-the-Toilet-Challenge

Photo of Edoardo Bono
Team

Thank you Anya for the support and for the informations you shared..We will try to contact their foundation as soon as possible to share our idea!

Photo of Ana Carolina Lanznaster
Team

You're a great man! Keep going... ! Beijos!!

Photo of Aline Denise Bernardo
Team

Grande projeto Edo! Estou na torcida por você (:

Photo of Lino Poggi
Team

Progetto bellissimo!! In bocca al lupo!

Photo of Andrea Giustetto
Team

Bravissimo edo! In bocca al lupo!