Conclusion of Kayemor Marketplace Latrine Project – Senegal
The project was to build two public latrines and showers at the Kayemor marketplace.
When I informed the people of Kayemor that I knew of an organization that funds latrine and other water- and sanitation-related projects, they were really excited. In fact, they were so excited that they started digging the septic tank for the latrines before the funding had even arrived because they wanted to be able to immediately start laying the cement when it did arrive.
Appropriate Project funds were used to purchase most of the materials necessary for the latrines and showers, such as cement, rebar, and PCV piping.
The community supplied the necessary sand, rock, and tools, as well as provided the labor needed for digging the septic tank, making the bricks, building the latrines, and installing the plumbing.
The marketplace committee oversaw the entire process of building the latrines and showers. They found volunteers to bring sand and rock for the latrines and used committee funds to pay the men who dug the septic tank, made the bricks, built the latrines, and installed the plumbing, since that required technical experience that only a handful of people in Kayemor have.
It took a several days to dig the septic tank because of how hard the soil was at this point in the year (several months into the dry season), but once the septic tank was dug, it only took the masons a couple of days to finish the latrines and showers.
The latrines and showers are housed in a simple concrete building with 2 stalls. The building is 5 meters by 2 meters, split in half lengthwise to separate the 2 stalls. It has a metal roof and metal doors, and each stall has a Turkish toilet. Both stalls are connected (via PCV piping) to the septic tank dug a few meters to the side of the building.
The tank is 3 meters deep by 2 meters by 2 meters, and is completely cement-lined. The design accommodates heavy use of the latrines on a daily basis.
The president of the marketplace, Dame Thiam, decided to officially “open” the latrines and showers on a Tuesday, the weekly market day. A small ceremony was held, during which the chief of the village, Sekh Ndiaye, the president of the village’s development organization, Amadou Diaw, and Dame Thiam all gave short speeches.
I was not in Kayemor for the ceremony but I talked later with Dame Thiam, who had the following to say about the latrines and showers:
“Praise God! We thank God for bringing these latrines and showers to Kayemor. Now not only can people in Kayemor use them on a daily basis, but all the people in all the surrounding villages can use them when they are visiting Kayemor. It helps us keep ourselves and our village clean. We also thank Peace Corps for giving us a volunteer who knows how to use the internet to find projects for us. Finally, we thank Appropriate Projects for providing us with the funds to make our dream of latrines and showers in the marketplace in Kayemor a reality. Thank you very much!!”
We, in turn, wish to thank Danielle for completing the project, and again thank The Soneva SLOW LIFE Trust for providing the funding.