Proving the business model of mobile desludging units in small urban centres in Mashonaland West in Zimbabwe


Use of small mechanised mobile desludgers while common in several southern African countries has not yet been trialled in Zimbabwe. Welhungerhilfe (WHH) have partnered with WASTE in Malawi to improve water and sanitation services including use of mobile desludging units and developing the sanitation value chain. The desludging of onsite sanitation facilities in Malawi has led to the extension of the service life of hundreds of domestic and institutional (e.g. school) toilets and has proved to be a profitable business.  The SELF Project is working with 10 local authorities in several small urban centres in Mashonaland West Province in Zimbabwe to improve their water and sanitation service delivery.

International Water and Sanitation Centre (IRC) is researching and evaluating the feasibility of introducing mobile desludging businesses within the SELF Project area and utilise the outcomes of WASTE’s business model assessment to validate a proposed business model and favourable start up locations as a result of this research.  WHH together with WASTE will introduce to Zimbabwe the use of the mobile desludging unit developed by WASTE in Malawi. IRC and WASTE is undertaking an analysis of the business model in order to develop profitable sanitation businesses that can sustain their sanitation service delivery. Results and recommendations will be documented and disseminated to strengthen the evidence-based knowledge of the wider WASH sector through local and international sanitation networks, channels and forums identified in the communication strategy.