Sanergy, East Africa
Growing up in Mukuru was a bit challenging. The most challenging was the access to sanitation. My family lived in the countryside in a house with good sanitation, but we had to move to Nairobi so my parents could find work.
When I came to Mukuru, it was completely different because we had to pay for toilets. Up country, we had a private toilet. And here, you only had a pit latrine, out in the open and not clean. It took me a long time, maybe a year, to accept this reality. Losing that sense of privacy made me feel somewhat inferior because that’s not how I was brought up. I kept thinking maybe it’ll just be for a short time and a good solution would come about.
Eventually it did. Sanergy’s Fresh Life toilets arrived in Mukuru in 2011: The toilet was less than 300 meters from my house. I decided for a clean, private toilet, the distance was nothing. Especially when it came down to my health. I would think of that every time I had to go the bathroom and walk to use the Fresh Life toilet.
I started working for Sanergy three years ago, and one of the first things I learned about was clean sanitation. In Kenya, we have sanitation issues not only in slums but also in rural areas because I think we believe it’s only a matter of accessing a good toilet, but there is a lot more to it. I decided I wanted to be a champion for clean sanitation.
I wanted to make these Fresh Life Toilets work, so we, as a country, can have a healthy people and help each other’s personal development.
Because if you are healthy, you are able to work and live a comfortable life.
Christelle, 25, has lived in Nairobi’s Mukuru development for roughly a year and works as a Sales Support Officer for Acumen investee, Sanergy.