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Hy2U Promotion at the World Water Week Conference in Stockholm

All over the world, with intervals of a few month, conferences are organized on development themes such as water. At this "UN Year of Sanitation" it was the dirty fact that 2 billion people simply do not hava a proper place for defeacation. This fact has not escaped attention of the development incrowd and many plans are made to tackle it. Such plans have to be discussed again and again, at this World Water Week Conference in Stockholm (17-14/08/2008) one topic was why all these plans fail. Demotech brought in the Hy2U-hand washing campaign. No failure this time?

Complete Crew at the Townhall in Stockholm
All Congress participants, a thousand people, were invited by the municipality for a reception at the Stockholm Town hall. There were speakers, but no one heard what they said. There was delicious food and plenty drinks.
Amid the dense crowd the hunt for contacts went on, addressing people, asking about their special interest, then introducing our Hy2U. As much as the first day and also later, we found plenty interest.
From left to right: Jakkoo, Bram, Simone, Reinder, Ben and Anna. Conrad took the picture.
Attending Seminars 1
Everyday there were seminars. We selected seminars that related to our Hy2U-hand washing subject. One of the speakers was Kochurani, director of a NGO in Kerala.
Many of our crew met her at the Women & Water stand. She also came to our house party.
Together we made plans for a training for two of her staff members to learn to make the new version of the BathroomBox and later to reproduce and test it in her project in Kerala.
Attending Seminars 2
Beth Karanja, represesnting NETWAS, could be the important contact person when Demotech can visit Kenia. In her presentation she answered Reinder's question. Reason for him to make a personal contact that could provide a strong link to Kenya's primary schools.
Daily work 1
This was our daily work: addressing people to make them come and look at the tower, then explain to them in detail how the Hy2U worked and all the ideas behind this project
Daily work 2
We discussed with people our approach, that they eventual could get a sample of the Hy2U as part of a teaching package.
Of all such discussions we made a small report. Later back at home we discussed such meetings, remembered special remarks and added notes to the database.
Daily work 3
There was a lady that liked the bags that much that she made Jakkoo to call Reinder out of a seminar to solve her problem.
Reinder told her that it would really be within her potential to make herself at least as nice a bag as she saw displayed. That such bags could be cut from old clothes and that from her very nice jacket at least four beautiful bags could be made.
The lady did not like this remark and walked angrily away. However leaving the crew convinced that our bags were really appreciated!
Special guest Margriet
Margriet, a Dutch women, deeply involved in sanitation projects in Eastern Europe and the Kaukasus. We learned many special details from her, specially about working in cold climates with composting toilets.
Sanitation movie with Bram and feed back from South Africa
Bram explained in front of a video camera to a video reporter the working and details of the Hy2U. This footage should become a part of a movie on sanitation all over the world, ending at this conference. Another interesting contact Bram made with a man who had organized 65.000 urine diverting toilets and who had very interesting information about how it worked out in practice.
Promising contact with James Ohayo
Representing UN-Habitat, James showed sincere interest in using the Hy2U-approach in a pilot in West Kenya. At last we felt a we had created a real bond to get something done at short notice.
James told us we should move Demotech to Kenya, where it really could make its promise and potential true.
No one else has been so positive about our work
Where we worked
This corridor was outside the main exposition area and not a real nice place to be. But it was the place where the Conference organization had tucked away the 30 posters on zig-zag placed boards. Because we were early our poster got the best place, opposite the doors of a big lecture hall.
Most of the time there were few people, so we had to draw people in from the main area. This took time, but worked. Bram specialized on Africans.
This is our tower
At unexpected high financial cost we brought in a DemoUnit tower for display of the Hy2U. Three Hy2U's could be used for -indeed- hand washing. There was water in the bags, they functioned very convincingly, to the amazement of our visitors. Higher up the tower we had the colorful bags on display, most of them made by Hanneke. It really helped to be able to display 'niceness', a quality not available elsewhere at the conference.
Our stand was kind of illegal. Conference hall staff commanded to remove it, then accepted it under limiting conditions, then forgot about it.
We could not have succeeded without our tower!
The poster, our reason to be here
The poster was made with the idea that it should guide us while presenting our ideas in a lecture like presentation, similar to a Power Presentation. But we did not get that opportunity.
Few people took the trouble to read it. It only served us when we explained to visitors that it really had been used in Ghana, that it really was Julia that took the Hy2U to its first successful application.
The little illustrations in the lower right corner were very helpful. Without them we would not have been able to explain about the BathroomBox and the BathroomToiletUnit.
What the Poster also did was to provide us with a free congress week for five of us!
The beautiful fountain greating us every morning
Most amazing at this conference was this fountain. At the conference everything was predictable, there was no news we became aware of. Inpressive were many of the posters, specially that of a designer from India, growing rice on roofs, integrating sanitatition and urban agriculture.
Impressive where also the presentations of young Swedes about their environmetal reseach, e.g. desinfectant from fruit peels.
But most amazing was the fountain, the click-clack of the valves in ever changing rythems when cylinders of water where shot up into they air. Such a water machine can be build and sanitation cannot be solved? Yes we can!