The current health situation, aggravated by the COVID crisis, requires solutions to overcome the various problems that have undesirable effects on the environment, in the short or long term. Therefore, with the implementation of Fasep as part of the France Relance project, WeCo has decided to be an actor that makes change with the help of the granted funds.
What is Fasep ?
The study and assistance fund for the private sector is an aid set up by the French Treasury. Its purpose is to prelude projects in developing countries. It generally targets companies offering innovative solutions that enable the decarbonisation of essential services. In the case of WeCo, it will be used to develop our innovative solution in developing countries, particularly in Dakar, then eventually in West Africa.
Since WeCo met all the required criteria, we responded to the call for tenders. The pitch, showing the usefulness of WeCo’s installation in Dakar as well as the water savings and environmental impact of toilets, convinced the jury of the relevance of sending a French start-up to a developing country for a still flourishing field of autonomous sanitation systems.
Purpose of the project
Indeed, there is a significant health hazard in West Africa with poor access to water and appropriate toilets. The technology proposed by WeCo, toilets with recycled flushes and not connected to the sewer is therefore a solution to this problem. Thus, thanks to FASEP, this technology can be adapted to the host country in its capital city that is Dakar and then to other countries such as Côte d’Ivoire.
Also, the project should allow WeCo to obtain ISO 30500 certification, a standard for autonomous sanitation systems. Senegal, the host country of the project, is one of the first countries to adopt this standard.
It will therefore be a question of installing our toilets at the Cheikh Anta Diop University in Dakar for R&D, followed by an industrialization and then a democratization of technology. The latter will be in the form of franchises, with a transfer of brand but also a transfer of skills and competences.
On this project, we will work with our usual collaborators including the SNME electricity company and Montpellier Engineering for everything related to electronics. They will have the same roles as usual including electrical and electronic installation.
To this will be added Delvic SN, which will be our main local collaborator. It is a company specialized in the treatment and recovery of sludge that intervenes particularly on autonomous sanitation systems. Delvic and WeCo have already had to collaborate in the Innowwide competition that we won together. Other partners include the National Sanitation Office of Senegal (ONAS) and the Wastewater Treatment Laboratory (LATEU).
The latter is part of the Fundamental Institute of Black Africa (IFAN) which is an entity of the Cheikh Anta Diop University where our container will be installed. Within our team, there is Yarame Ndiaye, our apprentice in waste treatment and recovery processes who is Senegalese. Very familiar with our system, she will be the representative of WeCo in Dakar.