Monsanto and Habitat for Humanity Team Up to Improve Sanitation in Indonesia

Thanks to the efforts of Monsanto Indonesia, Habitat for Humanity Indonesia and the Monsanto Fund, approximately 1,700 residents in two villages in Malang, Indonesia, have gained access to clean water, sanitation facilities and programs that use manure to produce biogas in households.

"Social responsibility activities carried out by Monsanto Indonesia are in line with the mission of the National Family Welfare Movement in improving the quality of family life in Indonesia," Hj. Nina Soekarwo, wife of the Governor of East Java Province, said. "We hope with this sanitation development, public health in rural Tajinan will increase. Our hope in the future is that this activity does not stop here, but in accordance to that, we could have it sustained and reach as many people in need."

In addition to building facilities, Monsanto Indonesia and Habitat for Humanity Indonesia, are also providing training to 500 village residents. This training will help them gain knowledge about safe and healthy homes, family finances and economic welfare, and healthy lifestyles.

"Monsanto Indonesia is concerned about the lack of availability of clean water for the people in Tajinan area," I Nyoman Buana, business lead for Monsanto Indonesia’s vegetable division, said. "Most communities in the villages of Ngawonggo and Pandanmulyo rely on sanitation needs from the river. Beginning from these concerns, Monsanto Indonesia appointed Habitat for Humanity Indonesia to help create a healthy environment by building clean water facilities and several other supporting facilities for the residents."

The program began in July 2010 and was completed in June 2011. Within one year of development, the installation of a fire hydrant pump system, two main storage units, six small reservoirs, and the installation of pipes along 452 meters have been completed. The entire facility works to convey water from the water source to the house residents. Not only do the residents now have access to clean water, but they also now have public baths, toilets and laundry facilities. The construction of the facility and counseling program was funded by the Monsanto Fund, the philanthropic arm of Monsanto Company.

James Tumbuan, national director of Habitat for Humanity Indonesia, said prior to the construction of these water facilities, many village houses did not have proper toilets.

"The houses which are feasible need to have decent toilet," he said. "Previous residents here rely on the river for washing, bathing and even drinking water. In addition to unhealthy lifestyles like these, which can also damage the environment, Habitat for Humanity Indonesia hopes that the development and extension of water facilities will raise the level of awareness of the population and lead to healthier lifestyles."

Monsanto Indonesia is committed to improving the welfare of Indonesian people, especially in agricultural areas, to assist the government in realizing the Millennium Development Goals and to be able to help alleviate poverty and reduce half of the number of people who do not have access to clean water by 2015.