Private and Social Toilets (PRISTO)

2015 - 2019 • Triarii B.V.


A public-private partnership intended to promote improved sanitation. This will be achieved by facilitating the marketing, production, sale and installation of Biofil Toilet Systems in urban poor households in Accra, Ghana.


PRISTO is a public-private partnership intended to promote improved health by reducing disease caused by contact with human waste. This will be achieved by facilitating the marketing, production, sale and installation of Biofil Toilet Systems in urban poor households in Accra, Ghana. Ga Central and Ashaimen municipalities were selected because of their pre-existing promotional activities for Biofil Toilet Systems.


Detailed location of main activity  Countries of activity


- Reduce the transmission of disease caused by human contact with faecal material by increasing the percentage of the population in the targeted municipalities that have a Biofil Toilet System, which does not require human contact with faecal material, in their household.
- Establish a cashless payment system that uses cell phone payments of small amounts once or twice each month for the repayment of toilet loans offered to PRISTO buyers through local banks and funding agencies. (PRISTO will not be providing toilet loans, but will be involved in negotiating rates that municipalities can offer their buyers.)
- Install 1,600 Biofil Toilet Systems in low income households, selling to Municipalities in bulk orders of at least 100 to improve the lives of 16,000 citizens.
- Install 400 toilets in public schools or clinics at no cost to Municipalities in return for their sales and marketing efforts within their community.
- This will provide children and medical patients with safe and hygienic toilets and hand-washing facilities, improving the health of 16,000 school children or medical patients.
- Educate residents and school communities about the importance of hand-washing to disease prevention and the proper use and maintenance of Biofil Toilet Systems.
- Make investments in improving the Biofilcom manufacturing process to increase production capacity from 1,000 per year to 5,000 per year.
- To further improve and standardize products and the production process while improving safety and labor conditions.
- Develop marketing strategies for Biofil Toilet Systems, based on an internal assessment of PRISTO’s effectiveness in promoting Biofil Toilet Systems in urban areas

Further information

Ashaimen has now sold enough private toilets to "earn" the installation of 20 social toilets at no cost. Ga Central invested time early on in engaging a bank near the District office to accept payments on toilet loans made to citizens from the District sanitation budget. Sales are now picking up. With the support of RVO, we are adding new Districts to the PRISTO project, offering social toilets in proportion to the number of Biofil toilets the local leaders are able to sell in the District.

Sales would always be challenging in urban poor areas, however, the challenges were amplified with the emergence of new companies making biofil-like alternatives. Some have under-priced Biofilcom, even though many do not match the quality of the original Biofil system. Districts are finding it increasingly difficult to get to the threshold of 100 toilets, given that citizens are more motivated by a lower price than they are by the promise of social toilets for their District, thus the decision to increase the number of Districts. Lower prices are a plus for the overall cause of "more household toilets," and there will continue to be more "settling in" as toilet companies price and re-price their products to attract urban poor customers.

The concern is that companies may reach a breaking point where they can no longer make a profit selling to the poor--so will market instead to the middle class.

Changes in the leadership based on the December 2016 election did slow down the work as Chief Executives were all replaced, and that took some time. Our learning was that there is a strong need for establishing systems that can work independently, even in the absence of a Chief Executive.

The Biofilcom manufacturing facility is now in place and the newly-designed composite digester box is also in production. There will be an opening ceremony in mid-November, near World Toilet Day, to celebrate the increased production capacity PRISTO has made possible.

PRISTO made an adjustment in the original plans for hygiene education, which were to be hand-washing training programs. After PRISTO had begun, several other organizations began installing toilets in all of the Ashaimen schools, each with an associated hand-washing education program. This did not reduce incentive for the District to promote Biofil toilets because they had an equally strong need for toilets in public places like markets, clinics, lorry stands. However, this development did mean that hand-washing education would be redundant. The decision was made to implement Menstrual Hygiene Management education programs instead.

PPP Partners and Contact Persons:
Lead Partner:
Triarii B.V. (business consultant), Ron Overgoor, Partner

Public Partners:
Ashaimen Municipal Assembly, Bronze Narh, Chief Executive
Ga Central Municipal Assembly, Aristo Aryee, Chief Executive

Private Partners:
Biological Filters and Composters, Kweku Anno, Executive Director & Founder

Crystal Marbles (financial services), Wim van den Dungen, Partner

Design 180 (manufacturing consultant), Wim Hardeman, Principal

Kellogg Consultants (marketing consultant), Diane M. Kellogg, Partner

Ghana-based NGO:
People’s Dialogue on Human Settlements, Farouk Braimah, Executive Director

Filter tags

Dutch government Ghana Market development Operation, maintenance and sustainable services Peri-urban Practitioners Private sector, including social enterprises Public awareness, advocacy and civil society engagement Specific to one or several countries Sub-Saharan Africa Toilets or urinals (user interface) Treatment of wastewater or greywater Vermifilters, vermifilter toilets


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