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Two Kenya enterprises eye poverty fight award

Mr David Auerbach, who is one of the brains behind Sanergy. PHOTO | WILLIAM OERI
Mr David Auerbach, who is one of the brains behind Sanergy. PHOTO | WILLIAM OERI  

Two Kenyan enterprises are in the running for $100,000 (Sh10 million) in a global contest which awards entrepreneurs whose ventures seek to end extreme poverty in their communities.

The two in the Waislitz Global Citizen Award are: Sanergy, a toilet franchise in Kenya’s informal settlements, and Solar Freeze, solar-powered cold rooms for rural farmers.

There are two other finalists in the award and the winner will be unveiled in New York on September 18, 2017.

The novel latrines are the brainchild of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) graduates David Auerbach, Ani Vallabhaneni, Lindsay Stradley and Nathan Cooke who came up with the idea of franchising toilets to meet the sanitation needs in urban informal settlements.

They teamed up to form Sanergy in 2011, a social venture to develop a network of small-scale sanitation centres across slums, create a waste collection network and convert human waste into bio-fertiliser.

Currently, 1,200 toilets have been sold and are in operation serving over 54,000 users every day.

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