USAID, private firms build 100 toilets for Negros Occidental, Sarangani households

Published December 9, 2021, 4:45 PM

by Betheena Unite

One hundred sanitary toilets were installed in Sagay City, Negros Occidental, and Alabel, Sarangani to prevent waterborne diseases in communities due to lack of such facilities.

United States Agency for International Development (USAID)

Through funding program, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and its partners installed the sanitary toilets that will benefit around 200 people from 40 households in Sagay City and 300 people from 60 households in Alabel.

According to the US Embassy in the Philippines, USAID worked with global development company DAI, microfinancing institution ASA Philippines, the Negros Women for Tomorrow Foundation, and the local governments of Sagay City and Alabel to install the toilets.

The project is a part of a pilot activity implementing Output-Based Aid and Blended Finance (OBA-BF), an innovative financing scheme that combines public grants with household equity.

“OBA-BF, as designed, is an innovative and creative approach to maximize and mobilize resources for the benefit of the poor,” said USAID Philippines Acting Mission Director Sean Callahan. “Strong local leadership and the power of public-private partnership like what we have here will ensure the sustainability of these resources.”

In Sagay City, DAI provided grants to subsidize the cost of septic tanks compliant with the standards of the Philippine Sanitation Code, and households paid for their toilets with micro loans from the Negros Women for Tomorrow Foundation.

In Alabel, grants from DAI and ASA Philippines subsidized the cost of septic tanks, and households funded their toilets through micro loans from ASA Philippines.

Around 6 million Filipinos do not have access to sanitary toilets, while some 4 million still resort to open defecation. This lack of adequate facilities poses risks of waterborne diseases for communities and leads to contamination of freshwater sources.

USAID aims to expand this financing scheme to other local government units in the country, particularly its Safe Water program sites in Palawan, Negros Occidental, and Sarangani.