Toilet workers of the world – we salute you!

Toilets really are incredible. And the best thing about them is they do more than you could ever imagine: they help people have better health, dignity, safety and so much more.

Here we introduce some of the inspiring people transforming lives in their communities with access to safe, private toilets.

Ernest, toilet builder, Burkina Faso

Ernest is a member of a solid team of toilet builders in Zongo, Burkina Faso.

With limited access to decent toilets in the town, people often have no choice but to go outside – increasing the risk of the spread of deadly diseases such as diarrhoea.

But Ernest’s hard work and dedication have convinced people in the community of the importance of safe toilets and even encouraged them to learn how to build their own.

“I love my job,” says Ernest. “I think the new toilets have made a huge improvement to the community – there will be far fewer diseases.”

Ernest, a toilet builder in Zongo, Burkina Faso.Ernest builds a new latrine in Zongo, Burkina Faso.

Chanda, community toilet caretaker, India

“I work to protect and help the dignity of my community,” says Chanda, a toilet caretaker in Delhi, India.

Chanda’s district used to have no access to safe, private toilets. But after working with our local partner, FORCE, the community was able to gain access to a new safe toilet block – greatly reducing the risk of sexual harassment for women and girls while looking for a discreet place to relieve themselves.

Chanda now works to keep the new facilities spick and span, and to help ensure her neighbours are safe and healthy.

“Keeping the toilets clean is my favourite thing about my job. I like it because there are no more diseases now – the children and community are happy.”

Chanda, a community toilet caretaker in Delhi, India.Chanda at her community's new toilet block in Delhi, India.

Ron, trainee plumber, Nicaragua

Ron is an ex-gang member from Bilwi, Nicaragua, who’s turned his life around by training to become a plumber and toilet builder.

When a recruiter from the plumbing training programme came to his house, he saw a route out of gang life – and a way to bring decent toilets and safe water to his community.

By learning a new trade, Ron is not only helping to build new toilets and pumps in Bilwi, he’s also making positive steps for himself. “There’s no future in gangs,” he says.

Ron, a trainee plumber from Bilwi, Nicaragua.Ron learns to build a new pump in Bilwi, Nicaragua.

Jane, Glastonbury Festival Sanitation Manager, UK

For the past few years, Jane has been taking care of over 5,000 toilets at the world’s greatest music festival.

“It’s a non-stop job during the festival, but it’s good it’s busy," says Jane. "That’s why I like it and I wouldn’t have it any other way.”

And at this year’s festival, we were excited to introduce our superstar Loo Crew, who cleaned the toilets at 34 ‘long drop’ sites at the festival, alongside our other teams of volunteers working at the composting loos, disabled toilets and our revolutionary female urinals, the ShePees.

“We work really hard to provide enough nice toilets for everyone. And now we’ve even got WaterAid helping to clean them!”

Jane, Glastonbury Festival Sanitation Manager.Jane next to one of the 'long drop' sites at Glastonbury Festival.

Feeling inspired by our global loo crew? Help more people build their own loos >