Project information

Kicking the Buckets: Sustainable sanitation

To improve the health and dignity of Namalu Prison community. People currently must squat over a bucket in a crowded room in place of a toilet. APP will install a biogas system and give sanitation training. This will reduce the high rates of disease and provide valuable resources via gas and manure.

2 years

Charity information: AFRICAN PRISONS PROJECT

  • Need


    Sanitation conditions at Namalu Prison are dire. Prisoners, staff and staff family members are subjected to disease outbreaks and unsustainable systems are adversely affecting the environment. Latrines overflow and faeces seep out over the surrounding area. A ‘bucket system’ is used, where people must squat over a bucket in a crowded room and it is not emptied until morning. The prison is hugely overcrowded with wards at more than 235% capacity making the spread of disease even greater.


    After an initial clean-up, APP will install biogas toilet facilities to provide safe and sustainable sanitation for the whole prison community. This innovative approach separates the waste gases and solids to provide gas powered stoves in the kitchen; with additional cow dung it will reduce firewood usage by around 60%. The solid waste will also be a very useful fertiliser. APP will provide training for staff and prisoners in maintenance and good sanitation practice.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Increased usage of safe, sustainable sanitation and uptake in hygienic activities.


    » Construction of sanitation facilities including biogas toilets and hand-washing stations.
    » Conduct biogas maintenance and sensitization training with prisoners and staff.
    » Conduct hygiene and sanitation workshops with prison community.

    What success will look like

    Success will be the construction of a functioning biogas system with 12 toilets and hand-washing facilities, as well as the facilitation of training for staff and prisoners.

    Aim 2

    Improved living conditions, environmental sustainability and reduction in deforestation.


    » Latrines demolished and clean-up operation conducted.
    » Energy saving gas stoves installed.
    » Solid waste used as manure.

    What success will look like

    Success will be decommission of current latrines and clean-up operation completed; bucket system removed; gas stoves installed and fire wood usage reduced.

  • Impact


    Community life will be significantly improved on daily and long-term bases. Incidence of waterborne and hygiene related sickness will be reduced. Rates of hand-washing after toilet use and before eating will increase and the amount of prison grounds affected by faeces will be reduced. Deforestation and fuel costs will be reduced. A coherent M&E framework has been developed for measurement, including collection of baseline data and post implementation monitoring, evaluation and impact reports.


    Staff and prisoners may not accept the new form of sanitation facility or functionality of waste. APP will mitigate this by providing sensitization training for staff and prisoners before construction and at point of completion; staff and prisoners will be involved and consulted at all stages. The soil consistency may mean construction is difficult. APP has contacted Biogas experts and reflected the required materials and activities in the budget to ensure construction is possible.


    Donors will receive a monthly progress report detailing current and upcoming activities and any necessary changes that have been or will be made to the project plans. A final report will also be available upon completion of the project.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £30,008

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      Amount Heading Description
      £2,100 Design Preliminary and final designs of biogas system.
      £19,450 Construction and Clean Up Construction of biogas system, decommissioning of latrines and clean up.
      £1,600 Trainings Sensitisation training, sanitation training and biogas maintenance.
      £2,493 Monitoring and Evaluation Baseline studies, project visits, monitoring and end of project evaluation.
      £4,365 Admin and HR Staff costs and office running costs.
  • Background


    The project will be implemented in Namalu Prison, Nakapiripirit, Karamoja region. This district in North-Eastern Uganda covers an area of 5,825.3 Sq. km, with a population of 192,300 people (94,400 female, 97,900 male). It is a high water table area, meaning that the soil is highly saturated with water, making building difficult. The area has traditionally been populated by cattle-herders, characterised by poverty and largely overlooked for investment and development.


    The project will benefit the whole prison community; this includes prisoners, staff and their families. The prison holds large groups of remand and convicted prisoners, males and females and currently two babies. Benefits will be felt daily by more than 6,100 men, women and babies, projected over the first ten years of facility. Karamoja is one of the most deforested areas of Uganda and thus the local population and environment will benefit from a significant reduction in fire-wood collection.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    APP has an excellent working relationship with the Ugandan Prison Service and a presence in many prisons throughout Uganda, Kenya and Sierra Leone. We are one of the very few organisations solely dedicated to improving the lives of prison communities and have a great history of implementing strong health related projects. One example is the construction of a Level III Health Centre at Gulu Prison, providing comprehensive and on-going healthcare to prisoners, staff and the surrounding community.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Alexander McLean

    Founder and inspirational leader of APP. Alexander’s drive and passion for the welfare of prisoners has been central to all of APP’s work.

    Sam Okello

    Welfare Officer Namalu Prison. Sam works on behalf of all those at Namalu and made the initial request to APP to improve sanitation at the prison.