The Savannah Alliance Ghana (SAG), a Non-Governmental Organization, has encouraged young people to take advantage of the business opportunities available in the Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) sector to boost their financial status.
It said with the advent of the campaign against open defecation and the promotion of good sanitation practices among the people, there were numerous opportunities in the WASH sector that the young people could harness in a time of job scarcity.
Mr. Stanley To-ang, the Project Lead for SAG, who said this in an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in Nandom, added that one did not need big capital before venturing into that business.
Some of those WASH sector business opportunities he identified were solid waste collection from households using the tricycle at a fee as practised in some parts of the country such as Accra and Kumasi, operation of mobile toilets at public gatherings, and small-scale water supply systems.
‘During occasions or gatherings such as funerals, getting access to the loo becomes a big problem.
The mobile toilet is a viable business that can be explored and used to salvage the situation during such occasions while putting money in the pockets of the operators’, Mr. To-ang explained.
On the large-scale level, he indicated that one could engage in the management, operation, and maintenance of WASH infrastructure or services such as dislodging of faecal sludge.
‘Liquid waste collection is another viable business opportunity within the WASH Sector with a ready market that people can do.
‘One only needs to get a truck that will be used to empty faecal sludge from toilets. The sludge collected can also be processed into compost and sold to farmers as manure’, he added.
One other viable business opportunity in the sector, Mr To-ang indicated, was the operation of waste landfills and biogas production for households using solid and faecal waste as raw materials which were freely available in abundance.
Meanwhile, the Nandom Rural Bank (NRB) had made available credit facilities for business in the WASH sector within the Nandom Municipality and Lambussie District under the Healthy Future for All (HF4A) project.
The Netherlands Development Organization (SNV) in partnership with the NRB and SAG are implementing the HL4A project which had made available a USD100,000.00 WASH Credit Fund to increase access to finances by micro and small-scale businesses and individuals to improve WASH service delivery within the two districts.
The credit facility ranged from GH?100,000.00.00 to GH?200,000.00 for enterprises while households and individuals could access up to GH?50,000.00, with an interest of 10 per cent for individuals and households and 15 per cent for businesses.
Mr. Guun Elijah, the Acting Micro-finance Manager of the NRB, told the GNA that the credit facility was limited to WASH-centred businesses and sanitation marketers such as sellers of plumbing materials and soap-making ventures.
‘To be able to access the WASH Credit facility, interested businesses have to be registered and have business registration certificates.
Individuals or households who need the loan will also need to have an account with the bank. Individuals will also be required to provide guarantors or sureties’, he explained.
Source: Ghana News Agency