Problem Addressed

The high rate of under-five child mortality (200/1000 in Ethiopia and 120/1000 in Kenya) is due in part to poor sanitary conditions. But for a common person in Ethiopia or Kenya, it is hard to derive motivation for washing hands from the intangible concept of bacterial transmission and infection. Demotech’s method for rapid introduction and promotion of handwashing with the Hy2U program should overcome the limited results of present hand washing campaigns.

Innovative Approach

Hy2U’s program aims at a viral acceptance, without financial support. The tricks to actually produce this hand washing device are the result of a similar-to-industry process of design, lab-testing and user exposure. No prior investment is needed for economic one-off or batch production that relies only existing local capacity.

Program Solution

The Hy2U (Hygiene to U) campaign is an innovative approach for rapid promotion and acceptance of washing hands in poor rural and urban areas in Ethiopia and Kenya. The project consists of a simple water dispenser for washing hands and a method for its dissemination. Instead of promoting hygiene by focusing on aspects of health, the project’s focus is on comfort, niceness and fun. Demotech focuses on simple, evident advantages given by their device for hand washing: comfort; attractive personalized appearance; use of little water (with only 40 cc water per use thanks to its self-closing tap); low to zero cost; availability at short notice, as it can be manufactured by local crafts; and fun to make in the context of primary and secondary school education.

Hy2U can be made from materials that are obtained cheaply and uses only a sharp cutting tool. Demotech uses a roadshow to spread its message, and the educational process is modified depending on the context and what will be fun for participants. Though the Hy2U is a newly created tool, all aspects of its use and manufacture are easy to understand and are derived from well-known ways of construction in local communities.

The method for this program is informed by 40 years of experience with the successful design and implementation of Demotech’s rope pump, among other pro-poor innovative designs about which you can learn more on Demotech’s website.