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From practice to research for improved sanitation (Malawi)

Joshua Mchenga (Malawi)

I have been engaged in the design and capacity building for the construction of durable, low-cost latrines, called corbelled latrines and sandbag latrines, targeting areas which are at risk of collapsing due to unstable soil. Participation in the online course has broadened my knowledge on sanitation and the chain. I have gathered knowledge on all the different components of the sanitation chain and its importance and I realize the need for identifying low-cost emptying technologies, which was also highlighted in the online course.

I have participated in field testing and design modification of a manual sludge digger and trash picker in Mzuzu, which was aimed at exploring low-cost pit-emptying alternatives. As the design did not perform as expected, I found that there is scope for improvement and further modification. In addition, I have also been involved in determining a research concept on DNA analysis of faecal sludge in collaboration with Northern State Carolina University, USA which will be starting soon.

The FSM online course has provided me with a solid foundation and complementing my experience, I am now engaged in the challenge to develop innovative solutions for the sanitation problems in Malawi.

Joshua Mchenga (Malawi)

Civil Engineer pursuing an MSc in Sanitation