Posted on 18 December 2014
The Ghanaian social venture Safi Sana started in 2009 to offer public toilet services in communal service blocks and a small-scale production unit for waste treatment in the region Accra.
Safi Sana collects toilet and organic waste from slums. This waste is used to produce organic fertilizer and green electricity. Money is earned with the sale of organic fertilizer and supplying energy to the local electricity network ‘in exchange for’ a return supply rate that has been negotiated with the local energy company.
The products serve a growing demand for affordable and effective fertilizer and renewable energy and offer the (local) governments an innovative solution for the massive waste problems in the cities.
The business is now scaled up to a production facility that handles daily 25 tonnes of toilet and organic waste.
Safi Sana is an initiative of Aqua for All in a consortium of commercial and public partners, including Royal HaskoningDHV, African Development Bank, Wereld Waternet, local Municipalities and the Body of Surveyors of the Dikes Regge & Dinkel. These founders have provided the initial financing by means of subsidies. In addition the International Fertiliser Development Centre (IFDC), the governments of Ghana and The Netherlands have also granted subsidies for local market development with respect to sustainable energy and agriculture. The African Development Bank has also committed to a subsidy for the construction of the production facility in Ashaiman.
For follow-up projects Safi Sana is working toward financing from the private sector by means of loans and private equity financing.
The objective of Safi Sana is to recycle waste in order to improve the hygienic conditions of the population, offer a solution for the waste problem, improve the fertility of the soil and reduce the local energy deficiency.
- communal service blocks with water and sanitation services
- affordable organic fertilizer
- biogas and green electricity
- Social impact as a result of the service blocks: improvement of the living conditions, public health and dignity of the poor;
- Environmental impact: distributing affordable organic fertilizer and ecologically responsible biogas and electricity;
- Economic impact: low energy prices, affordable fertilizer which gives better yields and encouragement of entrepreneurship among the local populations, often women by establishing of communal service blocks as franchise businesses.
Safi Sana is currently active in Ghana. Due to its comprehensive structure the organization is easy to replicate. Our current plants serve as blueprints, which can be duplicated with minimum modifications to adapt to local market circumstances. Safi Sana aims to expand its activities to other parts of Ghana and beyond within three years (2015-2018).