Bathroom Toilet Unit
This is about the construction of Bathroom Toilet units affordably. It aims at improving sanitation in rural settings. This method is meant to be used in a communal project where inhabitants of a village can be motivated to build a private bathroom for every family around. To achieve this each family works on its own bathroom facility concurrently while sharing experience and guidance. A special construction method is used to permit this.
Properties of the Bathroom Toilet-unit
- A comfortable space for bathing, also to be used for sanitation, aesthetically pleasing, decorated, easy to clean,
- Sufficient space for a parent to bath a small child and to teach it the proper use of a toilet.
- Waste water from bathing rinses urine away, minimizing stink and use of flush water.
- The bathroom/toilet unit can be configured as a composting toilet or to dry-fill a dug out, the choice is left to the future users and will be based on the way how users look at sanitation.
- The cost of the bathroom/toiltet unit is only the cost of one bag of cement. The work can be done by the adults and children of each family with guidance from an instructor.
- MOST IMPORTANT, the method of construction is adjusted to a communal project. With some guidance of sanitation helpers (like WaterAid) the local carpenter makes a true scale model in wood of the toilet slab, gutter and other parts. Everybody can imagine what it will be like when later copied in concrete. With a special but simple trick an accurate impression or mold of the slab can be made into the dirt. Then concrete with some reinforcement is cast into the mold. Two such slabs and a gutter make one toilet. Personal decoration of the slabs is done by putting colored stones or bits of tiles in the mold before the concrete is poured over it.
- MOST IMPORTANT, with the one wooden model of the slab all the cast forms for all the families around can be made within a few weeks.Thus ALL the families then own a private bathroom sanitation unit of high quality.
- When ALL the families in a neighbourhood use their own toilet this results in far less illness, especially for children. If only a small part of the total area population were to be left out this life-saving health improvement would not be attained.
- How to instruct the populace on how and why the new bathroom facilities should be used?
It is not clear how users should best be instructed on how to use the toilet. The following options are being considered:
- Children are instructed at school (preferably the local school takes the lead with improving sanitation).
- At home it is the task of the mother to instruct and guide the children and female visitors.
- It is the task of the man at home to instruct male visitors. He should monitor that the proper hygienic condition of the toilet is maintained. When feces is to be composted, he should change the use of one container to the other in a timely fashion.
- If feces is not reused, he should prepare the new pit and plan move the bathroom/toilet unit to this new site before the current one is overfilled..
The Bathroom/Toilet unit was used like this for many years at Demotech's own workshop.
With wooden copies of the final concrete parts made, imprints of the parts may be made in the soil near each dwelling. These imprints serve as a mold to cast the concrete parts in. Work in a village for this project is split up in eight parts:
- Making the wooden copies of the concrete parts for the bathroom/toilet, the slab and the gutter
- Making two imprints of the wooden slab in the dirt using the wooden mold
- Making one imprint of the gutter in the dirt using the wooden mold
- Making the slab: line the soil imprint with paper or plastic, add concrete, reinforce, compact and finish
- Making the gutter: line the soil imprint with paper or plastic, add concrete, reinforce, compact and finish
- Prepare for composting: build the sub-structure with two cellars under the slabs
- Or prepare a temporary pit top construction that can be moved when the pit is full
- Assemble and decorate the Bathroom/Toilet unit and use it
Acknowledgments, Credits, and Bibliography