Toilet Twinning and World Toilet Day 2018

On Monday 12 Nov the Club held a lively and busy meeting to mark World Toilet Day  with a bottle sale, speaker and presentation of a Twinned Toilet certificate to Caroline Eldred and Cllr Annie Brewster from the St Albans Museum and Gallery. Please click on this link to find out more about Toilet Twinning

Annie Brewster (centre), portfolio holder for Culture and Sport, and Caroline Eldred (right) from St Albans Museum and Gallery are pictured here with Club President Linda Shall receiving their framed Toilet Twinning Certicate – destined for the Ground Floor loo in the new St Albans Museum and Gallery.

Catherine Fenton, an artist, interpreter and translator for child protection gave an inspirational talk about how she became involved in Toilet Twinning (see picture of Catherine). She had an idea of doing something through her art for World Toilet Day. 2.3 billion people have no access to a toilet. She hadn’t realised how bad it was for women and girls in particular. She spoke movingly about how they are vulnerable to rape and abduction when they go to the fields. Girls may not go to school when they have their periods. Families suffer with diarrhoea from contamination and the lack of facilities for toileting. She put together an exhibition and raised money for toilet blocks In Haiti and Sierra Leone. She donated her paintings to Toilet Twinning for auction at a gala dinner. It is a huge problem, but for £60 you can buy a toilet for a village. It’s not, she said, just about the toilet but the education that goes with it. When you buy a toilet you are buying the possibility of many. Be a thinker, be a sharer, be an artist were the themes of the UN Water Programme which she endorsed.

The Club had a bottle sale during the evening – which raised a further £80 for Toilet Twinning.

Members are encouraged between now and the new year to have a collection box in their loos at home and “spend a penny” for Toilet Twinning so we can twin even more loos in St Albans.

The Club has been doing this since 2016 – and momentum is gathering so watch this space!

Our Member Denise Powell reported back from the SIGBI Conference  www.sigbi.org/liverpool2018/  The SIGBI project for 2019-21 is Empowering girls in Nepal. The two resolutions regarding climate change were passed. Economic empowerment was a theme on the Saturday and the toilet twinning presentation at the end was very close to home. Some clubs have twinned both cities and towns. Denise said that there were many high spots, and the pleasure of meeting old friends and to be with her family at Conference.