Saturday, March 10, 2012

Israel Award

PH foundation bags Israel award

December 30, 2011, 3:45pm
MANILA, Philippines — The Water, Agroforestry, Nutrition and Development (WAND) Foundation in the Philippines recently bagged the 2011 Raanan Weitz International Competition on Integrated Development Projects held at the Weitz Center for Development Studies in Rehovot, Israel.
According to the Philippine Embassy in Tel Aviv, Elmer V. Sayre and Jed Christian Z. Sayre of the WAND Foundation received the award for their project titled "Using the Rehovot Approach to Close the Loop Between Sanitation, Food Security and Biodiversity Improvement as a Means to Alleviate Extreme Poverty: The WAND Foundation Experience."
Sayre said the project was a product of intense study and research taking into account the available technologies in Israel and linking or combining it with the Philippine approach and experience.
"The design of the project focuses on ecological sanitation and the prevention of the spread of diseases, including the conservation of water, minimizing pollution and conservation of valuable fertilizer," Sayre said in a statement.
He also noted that the project aims to respond to the challenges of climate change, which has steadily drawn international attention every year, particularly the effects of the El NiƱo phenomenon.
The award was given on the occasion of the 13th year since the death of Professor Raanan Weitz, who was the founder of Weitz Center for Development Study and a leader of the Israeli and International Development Planning.
Charge d'Affaires Ferdinand Flores, who attended the ceremonies and witnessed the conferment of the award to the winners, noted that Filipinos are born to excel in their chosen career, field of expertise and studies.
"Winning this award is a testament that Filipino intelligence is indeed being recognized around the world, and this time, in Israel," said Flores. "The embassy hopes that there will be more students coming from the Philippines who would provide award winning project designs at the Weitz Center.
The Weitz Center for Development Studies opened the 6th Integrated Development Projects Competition. We called professionals from developing countries to submit projects, which reflect the spirit of the "Rehovot Approach" formulated by Prof. Raanan Weitz. This year the competition focused on "Extreme Poverty Alleviation".
The Professional Committee of the Raanan Weitz Competition 2011 has recommended the Weitz Center to select Elmer V. Sayre and Jed Christian Z. Sayre from the WAND Foundation in the Philippines, with their project for First Place. Project Presentation and award granting will be held in a ceremony on December 19, 2011 in Rehovot, Israel.


Movable dry toilet for the poor.

Steel Dry Toilet

Photo of a deluxe steel-framed ecosan toilet good for high-end market, parks, special events, ranches and vacation homes.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

WAND Foundation Portable Ecosan Toilets for Typhoon Sendong Survivors

One of the most viable response for safe sanitation for the Typhoon Sendong devastated communities is portalets. The solution of international aid agencies coming to assist is this orange (or blue) imported, expensive and utterly useless type of portalets. Utterly useless because nobody knows how to pump the waste out, no vacuum pump is available and it needs a specialized vehicle to carry the effluent. After several days use, all 158 of these were filled to the brim, smells bad, and is a health hazard.

Our solution is portable, dry, urine diverting, dehydration toilets where the only “high technology” is the toilet bowl shown here which we are making ourselves.

One toilet can be installed within 3 hours. It can be transported where the victims are.

Aside from installing, we do capacity-building and advocacy, waste management and recycling and eventually using the waste as valuable fertilizer for small farmers.
Our main concern now is the thousands of survivors coming back to what is left of their homes without sanitation at all both in the cities of Iligan and Cagayan de Oro. Shown here are our portalets quickly installed where the survivors are returning. Our aim is to prevent a second wave of tragedy which is water-borne epidemic caused by open defecation.

The award we got from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is a winner. People believe in our approach when I say we are backed-up by a prestigious award.

Bio-data of the In-House Adviser

Dr. Sayre’s work experience is varied and includes being an agriculture extension worker, a college teacher, a local consultant and an NGO adviser. He implements initiatives related to water system development, biodiversity, agro-forestry, and ecological sanitation, promoting a culture of peace, micro-financing and rural organizing with emphasis on the poor mainly in Mindanao, the Philippines. His initiatives have won much recognition, including an award from the Bill and Melinda Gates Grand Challenges Explorations in Global Health for his work on ecological sanitation. He was an Endeavour Leadership Fellow in Australia in 2007 and a Rockefeller Foundation Fellow in Bellagio, Italy, in 2010. He has published manuals on community-based seedling nurseries and tree planting and on promoting a culture of peace in Mindanao, as well as a book on ecological sanitation. He is also a published poet and short-story writer.

Description of the WAND Foundation

The Wand Foundation started operation in 2003 (then called the Local Empowerment Foundation or LEF) with projects focused on promoting health, sanitation, nutrition and improved livelihoods among the poorest of the poor and mainly in 5 municipalities in west Misamis Oriental.  It has also expanded its activities in Lanao del Norte with its promotion of culture of peace project and in Zamboanga del Norte with its sustainable small farm development project.  The Wand Foundation is a winner in the 2003 Panibagong Paraan and a finalist in the international Development Marketplace held in Washington DC in 2005. It is a First Prize winner in  an international competition on integrated rural development in Israel.  In June 2008, it was decided to change the name of LEF to WAND Foundation since LEF rhymmes with  left  or leftist which is a common name of the communist New People’s Army (NPA) operating in the 80’s in most of our project areas. The executive director of the Foundation, Cora Sayre has more than 20 years experience in rural development work and has attended a number of international training programs, notable of which is the 6-month social leadership course at the Coady International Institute in Canada, the environment leadership course at the Smithsonian in the USA, rural enterprise in The Netherlands, sustainable agriculture in Israel and the 6-month ecological alternative to sanitation course in Sweden and in India.    The WAND is a recent winner in a Bill and Melinda Gates competition for global health and a laureate of the prestigious Tech Awards in the USA.