Woloo App to Increase Women’s Access to Public Toilets in India receives support from IWSH.
BENGALURU, India, Jan. 28, 2022 – The International Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene Foundation (IWSH) is proud to announce its support for Woloo, an Indian startup whose app strives to guarantee women have access to clean, safe, and sanitary restrooms in public areas.
The software, which is already available on Android and will be accessible on iOS soon, assists women in locating the nearest washroom when they are away from home or work.
Despite the fact that women account for more than half of the Indian population, access to such facilities remains a concern. Finding a usable toilet in public places can be difficult for women of all socioeconomic situations, especially those who go out frequently. Many of the public restrooms that are available were built on a shoestring budget and are in bad condition. While around 13% of the world’s female population lacks access to toilets, research suggests that the figure in India is closer to 50%.
Each Woloo-enabled washroom follows a standard protocol to ensure safety, cleanliness, and hygiene. The protocol is based on a guideline developed by the Toilet Board Coalition, a global nonprofit enterprise, and the Woloo Assurance of Hygiene (WAH), which is based on safety, hygiene, and accessibility parameters. Woloo operates over 1,500 washrooms in Mumbai, with ambitions to expand to Jaipur, Ahmedabad, Pune, and Bangalore in the near future.
“Woloo’s mission is to provide hygiene dignity to a diverse group of women of all ages in India,” said Woloo founder/CEO Manish Kelshikar. “Our partnership with IWSH and IAPMO will certainly help in raising the standards of shared sanitation in India to world-class benchmarks. IWSH, IAPMO and its partners, and Woloo will work together and build trust in shared and public sanitation.”
IWSH has contributed to a public relations campaign advertising a new facility in Mumbai’s Ghatkopar Metro station, as well as financing 1,000 annual subscriptions for women of Mumbai’s Railway police department. IAPMO-certified products from Ashirvad Pipes, Cera India, and A.O. Smith India have been graciously donated to the project.
Eight smart toilets, a 14-seat café, and a 600-square-foot retail section dedicated to women’s hygiene, personal care, intimate utility, and beauty items will be included in the 1,000-square-foot Woloo-PowderRoom Lounge. From 11 a.m. until 5 p.m., there will be an exclusive glimpse. Sunday, January 30th, is Indian Standard Time.
The mission of Woloo, which opened its first facility Nov. 19, 2019 — World Toilet Day — is to provide world-class access to hygiene facilities for women of all ages and diversities across India.
“Lack of access to improved sanitation, especially out of the home, for women has remained a difficult problem to solve, leading to immense anxiety on one hand and continuing a high burden of disease on the other,” said Dr. Nimish Shah, managing director of IAPMO India Pvt. Ltd. “There are very few sustainable models that have successfully solved this problem. Woloo is a promising women’s hygiene and sanitation access platform that is taking this challenge head on. IWSH and IAPMO are proud to partner with Woloo in its mission to provide safe, clean and hygienic sanitation access for women. We believe that quality, certified hardware underpins the durability of improved sanitation, and Woloo powder rooms are perfect venues to demonstrate well-designed, hygienic public toilets.”
Visit www.woloo.in to learn more about Woloo India.
Visit www.iwsh.org/iwsh/our-work/asia/in to learn more about IWSH work in India.
SOURCE The International Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Foundation (IWSH)