Project #289 | Community Hygiene Center for Indigenous Batwa Community

Our Partnership with AIMPO

Indigenous ethnic groups in Rwanda, including the Batwa, face disproportionately higher barriers to health and economic well-being.  Batwa traditionally lived and hunted for food in the thick forests of central Africa, but were evicted in the 1970s in an effort to protect endangered gorillas.  Most now live on government-designated land.  Due to their relatively recent transition to new homes and limited income to build sanitation infrastructure, a majority of Batwa community members live without basic sanitation.  Across Rwanda, only 64% of people have access to sanitation services, and these numbers are much lower in Batwa villages like Bukamba.

One Day’s Wages partnered with African Initiative for Mankind Progress Organization (AIMPO) – a nonprofit founded by and for members of the Batwa community – to reduce the spread of disease and infection through improved hygiene and sanitation.  Through our partnership, a brand new Community Hygiene Center was constructed in Bukamba Village, Gicumbi District.  The center is now a place to:  educate the community about hygiene and sanitation practices, demonstrate low-cost latrines and hand washing facilities made of locally available materials, and produce basic hygiene products like soap.  Those trained in soap making are now organized as a cooperative and selling both bars and liquid soap for earned income!

Our Collective Impact




Meet Francoise

Like many in Bukamba, Francoise learned to wash clothes using solanum mammasun, a locally available tropical fruit. But without disinfectant soap available, hygiene-related skin infections and diseases were rampant in Bukamba.

Francoise is among those who particiapted in a soap making training at Bukamba’s newly built Hygiene Center. Each weekend, the group gathers to make bars of soap for bathing, and jugs of liquid soap for washing.

Now mobilized as a cooperative, members are selling bars of soap for 1,400 RWF a piece (about $1) and 5 liter jugs for 3,000 RWF ($2.30). The revenue not only supports members with much-needed income but is also reinvested to continue expanding hygiene center programs.

Francoise shares:

“I am very happy because I know how to make liquid and bar soaps. Before I used to clean using solanum mammasun but today I use a good soap. Every Saturday and Sunday we make liquid and bar soaps.”

Thank you for making this possible!

Our movement is grassroots, to us that not only means the work on the ground is led by local leaders with the support of the community, but it also means that we raise the funds for our projects through everyday donors just like you. In addition to all the donors that gave $25, $100, or $250 and the campaigners that ran a race or donated their birthday to raise funds, we also want to thank our generous business, school, and faith sponsors who believed in our work and joined the movement.

If you want to support future projects like this you can make a donation to our Water and Sanitation fund below.

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One Day's Wages is a grassroots movement of people, stories, and actions to alleviate extreme global poverty

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