Existing small businesses should be encouraged to engage in the sanitation market
To establish and manage a business requires financial, marketing, sales, stock control and administration skills. Alongside these skills, an entrepreneur must be willing to take on risk. The research identified that utilising the skills and attributes of existing entrepreneurs would improve the supply of sanitation services and products. Participants at the NRSM workshop identified the following advantages and disadvantages of engaging existing entrepreneurs.
Female entrepreneurs should be encouraged to engage in the supply of latrine options
In all three districts, women were regarded as the custodians of the home and the surrounding compound. Sanitation fell within these grounds and therefore women were seen to hold responsibility for this issue. During focus group discussions the role of women in the sanitation market was pursued. In female groups, in Dowa and Nkhata Bay, women expressed a strong interest to be trained and supported in the supply of sanitation products and services. Participants at the NRSM workshop identified the following advantages and disadvantages of engaging female entrepreneurs
A vertical network model should be trialled during a sanitation marketing program
A vertical network model was identified as a suitable business model for rural sanitation in Malawi. Figure 1 provides a schematic diagram of the recommended business model developed by particapant’s at the NRSM Workshop. The business would be managed by an existing entrepreneur (EE), her/his role would include customer relations, supply of building materials, product and financial management. The construction of the latrine would be sub-contracted to a mason. The EE would engage a network of female agents (FAs) that would conduct promotion and sales meetings, manage sales outlets in weekly marketplaces and monitor use and sustainability.