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The issue

Sanitation is still a big challenge in Tanzania. According to DHS 2010 it is only 22% of households with improved toilet facilities in urban areas. Majority of households in urban areas are using unimproved toilet facility with 50% using pit latrines. Piped sewerage coverage is as low as 17% (Sanitation policy draft, 2009) with the rest of population relying on on-site sanitation, mostly pit latrines which use unhygienic means of emptying such as opening up the pits to flow with water during rain season.

 Despite the efforts taken by the Government to alleviate hygiene and sanitation consequences, for  example, The ‘Mtu ni Afya Campaign’ in the early  1970s’ and other programmes, still about 13% of all households lack of any form of latrine facilities. Coverage of basic sanitation in urban areas is about 97.6% compared to 83.3% of rural households. Whilst the coverage is high against many other African countries, the quality of the latrines is often poor with only 47% of the existing latrines being considered as improved latrines of an acceptable sanitary condition, and in urban areas piped sewerage is as low as 17%. Water, sanitation and hygiene related diseases are still common in Tanzania and contribute above 60% of the diseases treated in our health facilities.

Our interventions

Our work focuses in the informal settlements. Despite the fact that these areas are occupied by majority of the urban residents (more than 75%), many actors including the government have not put enough emphasis towards addressing sanitation challenges. CCI and the federation have conducted enumeration, mapping and profiling of these areas, and in many cases sanitation challenges and its effects have been acute. Working with the community by identifying challenges and come up with solutions to their own challenges has helped CCI to gain massive experience. Several technical approaches on sanitation have been identified by CCI together with community basing on the local environment and considering the issue of affordability.

  • Household and shared toilets

    In many urban informal settlements of Tanzania a single house is occupied by a number of households, normally three to eleven. That being the case toilets constructed by our trained technicians is shared toilets and single household. CCI and the federation have been helping communities to access affordable toilets loans. Technologies used are normally poor flush with the soak pit lined with trapezoidal blocks and ecological sanitation toilet (dry toilets) which are constructed by different local available materials such as the interlocking bricks which uses minimum cement, use of plastic bottles, use of trapezoidal blocks and others.  Making the toilets affordable to beneficiaries has been a key consideration in addressing sanitation where different materials, techniques and community contribution have been used to lower the cost.

  • Public toilets

    The lack of public toilets in major towns across Tanzania puts the health of millions of people at risk as desperate citizens are forced to relieve themselves in indecent, unhygienic facilities. Sometimes local residents deliberately avoid the few accessible public toilets, many of which are in awful situation. CCI and the federation are working with different Municipalities to design, build and operate toilets in public areas such as in markets and bus stands. We build, rehabilitate and set up proper shared management committee normally comprised of all stakeholders involved in the construction of facility. This is a new and unique management model which helps to have effective management system for ensuring the toilets are kept clean, well managed, ensures cost recovery and sustainability.

  • Simplified sewerage system

  • Pit emptying

    The challenge of pit emptying is acute especially in the informal settlements where streets are packed up and accessibility is very limited. The popular sanitation facilities in these areas are pit latrines. CCI supports the community through setting up pit emptying groups (entrepreneurs). These groups are trained and supported to purchase a pit emptying device called a Gulper. The gulper is a combination of a hand pump (lift pump) with a tri-cycle carrying a container of normally 350-700 litres.

    The gulper has an added advantage to perform well in the informal settlements because it can penetrate in the narrow paths and it offers flexibility in payment for the service as a beneficiary can empty a certain volume of the sludge depending on the affordability levels. Usually the payment is between   25,000 to 45,000Tshs (USD$ 12- 21) per trip depending on the distance.

  • Dewats


  • Moving towards reuse of resources

    CCI supports community to collects solid waste, recycle and reuse of resources out of collect garbage. In recent, the solid waste collection has been linked to recycling in order to maximize the potential of garbage for producing fertilizers (compost) and other materials for getting more income to groups. This also will reduce the cost of transporting garbage to dumping sites which are usually located far/outside the city. The bigger picture is to help these communities to see a business opportunity in waste management other than little money accessed from collection fees.  Two centres have been established in Dodoma and Dar es Salaam. Both centers have started recycling by making composting from garbage.

  • Solid waste management and Hygiene promotion

    CCI supports community in promoting Hygiene at community and households level.  Solid waste and hygiene promotion teams are trained by CCI to promote hygiene and collecting solid waste within their settlements in partnership with local authorities. Some of these groups have gained official recognition and are now able to tender for contracts from Local authorities.

  • School water and sanitation (SWASH)




  • Address : Center For Community Initiatives,
  • Kijitonyama (Behind COSTECH Building),
  • Ali Hassan Mwinyi Road, KIJITONYAMA.
  • P.O. BOX 31515.
  • Telephone : +255 22 2701390
  • Mobile       : +255 755657573