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22 May 2018 - Field Visit to Safaishala in Ahmedabad

Minimising the amount of water required to flush the waste in the existing toilets team proceeded to have a view of certain types of toilets that are in use for the past many years. The field visit was done in SFAISHALA, Ahmedabad. Founded on the principles of Mahatma Gandhi and Ishwar Bhai, safaishala is basically a toilet museum where the team founded all sort of toilets ranging from the ancient compost pit method to the modern flush toilet systems.

What the team learnt from this field visit:

  • Depending upon the geographical context of India the problem of sanitation cannot be generalized

  • The museum has varying design of toilets based upon geographical locations.

  • Toilets for hilly areas must possess different design than toilets in tribal area of north-east. Similar is the case for toilets to be used in water deficient areas and toilets to be used where high amount of rains cause overflow of their existing system.

  • Display of varying and different designs of toilets in their museum helped the team to get an idea over what are existing designs on which toilet system have already been designed and changes that can be incorporated in those designs to solve problem for the user community.

Enclosed: Images of all kind of toilets

  • There was a toilet inside the premise where the team saw gas cylinder placed just adjacently to the toilet door. This

is basically producing energy from the fecal material and converting it into heat.

  • The museum in its garden has installed dining seats and tables all in the form and shape of a flush in order to promote maximum usage of toilets and especially to eradicate the mentality of treating toilets as being something to be not talked of during festivity or while eating food.

  • There was a toilet whose cubicle was constructed via leftover bamboo sticks. Now this idea can be implemented in places where construction budget is pretty low and DIY techniques can enable villagers to build their own toilet systems with minimum resources possible.

  • At certain places in spite of having one hole from where the waste moves out toilets were constructed in a manner to accommodate two holes so that both of them are filled simultaneously.

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