The Toilet Board Coalition sat down with the Cohort and Mentors of the 2017 Toilet Accelerator to find out a bit more about what they felt were the most valuable learnings in their journey together over the last twelve months and what they’re excited about for the future of the sanitation sector.
TBC: Hi David, could you please tell our readers a little bit about yourself and your role in the 2017 Toilet Accelerator?
David: Hi, I’m David and I am the co-founder of Sanergy, we build healthy, prosperous communities by making hygienic sanitation affordable and accessible throughout Africa’s informal settlements. We were selected last November to join the 2017 Toilet Accelerator Cohort.
TBC: What are some of the new inspirations, insights or understandings that you’ve gained through your year working with the Toilet Board Coalition in the Toilet Accelerator?
David: Through the Toilet Accelerator experience, we at Sanergy have been able to tap into a network of like-minded organisations and initiatives that are working towards the same goal — providing sustainable solutions to the global sanitation challenge. The ability and access to work with these organisations and individuals in the network to push forward advancements in our sector will bring valuable benefits for not only Sanergy but we hope for other businesses like ours as well.
TBC: What is your advice to the sanitation business sector?
David: 4.1 billion people in the developing world still lack access to sustained, safe sanitation — including waste treatment. I really believe that this should be seen as an opportunity, not just a crisis. Our population is rapidly urbanising as people move into cities and sewer systems cannot serve everyone. The private sector has the incredible opportunity to engage with these residents as customers and to both run a successful business and solve a massive social challenge.
TBC: Can you give us a glimpse of your vision for the future?
David: Sanergy’s vision is for all developing countries to invest in inclusive, citywide sanitation solution for everyone — particularly residents of urban slums. The Toilet Accelerator is a platform that creates an environment for different stakeholders — government, business, civil society, and utilities — to begin those conversations. Only then can we begin to have an impact and provide total sanitation for everyone living in the cities of tomorrow.
TBC: Thanks David!
READ NEXT: David’s Project Lead through his time in the Toilet Accelerator Programme, Sandy Rodger’s perspective.