Safe water and sanitation are basic human rights!

These Haitian siblings ― residents of Pierre Payen, Haiti ― are beaming with pride. They were the first.

The first home in Friendship Village with no flying insects spreading dangerous diseases to their family.

Also, the first residents in their village to live free from a latrine stench pervading their living quarters.

The first family in Haiti to have a revolutionary SaTo sanitary toilet pan installed in their home. And have their quality of life forever improved. On July 11, 2014, this Haitian banana harvester, Edline, and her family became owners of the first SaTo hygienic toilet pan installed in the Western Hemisphere.

The open latrine (left) allowed flying insects to come into contact with human waste and spread disease to the family. The American Standard SaTo toilet pan (right), shown with its proud owner, seals off the latrine to keep the home healthier and safer.
The open latrine (left) allowed flying insects to come into contact with human waste and spread disease to the family. The American Standard SaTo toilet pan (right), shown with its proud owner, seals off the latrine to keep the home healthier and safer.

The SaTo sanitary toilet pan was invented by plumbing manufacturer American Standard Brands initially for use in rural Bangladesh. It closes off pit latrines from the open air, reducing the transmission of disease via air-borne insects. Here in this village in Haiti, half a world away from Bangladesh, the SaTo toilet pan serves the same purpose.

With several small children, this household ― located 90 miles outside the island nation’s capital of Port o Prince ― was in desperate need of an improved sanitation device. Like most residents, this family was using an open latrine when going to the bathroom. Located inside their home, the latrine emitted an unpleasant odor while allowing insects to easily come into contact with the human waste. This led to the spread of disease from the pathogens transmitted from the insects to the family members.

Friendship Village ― built to give shelter to Haitian earthquake victims ― was the site of the first SaTo sanitary toilet pan installed in Haiti to prevent the spread of disease through insects' contact with human waste in open pit latrines.
Friendship Village ― built to give shelter to Haitian earthquake victims ― was the site of the first SaTo sanitary toilet pan installed in Haiti to prevent the spread of disease through insects’ contact with human waste in open pit latrines.

Nearly all of the villagers attended this historic SaTo installation. It symbolized an important step forward in improving sanitation in a nation still reconstructing two years after this devastating natural disaster. Aside from learning about the SaTo pan’s benefits, residents were educated on basic plumbing tips. They were instructed how to keep all open sewer lines tightly capped and extend the latrine vent well above the roof line of their homes.This initial SaTo pan was installed by American Standard’s Jim McHale, Ph.D., who serves as the Company’s global sanitation products business unit leader. McHale accompanied volunteers from Plumbers Without Borders to Haiti in July 2014 to determine if the SaTo pans would be useful in improving sanitation facilities in that country. He visited with 40 families in Friendship Village, a community developed and built by NGO Food for the Poor to provide shelter for the victims of the 2010 Haitian earthquake.

In 2014, American Standard will be donating more than 7,900 SaTo pans for use in homes, schools and tent cities in Haiti. Food for the Poor will assist with the pan distribution to villages throughout the nation. This effort will help Haiti’s residents rebuild with safer sanitation facilities and an improved quality of life, one SaTo at a time.

SaTo™ is a registered trademark of American Standard Brands.

Source: SaTo Stories: SaTo Toilet Pan Brings Safe Sanitation to Rural Haiti

Debra Judge Silber, of Fine Homebuilding Magazine, recently sat down with Fred Schilling for an insightful interview about his work and altruistic efforts. Fred is a VP of Plumbers Without Borders and has made a name for himself as not only a master plumber but also as caring individual who is not afraid to get his hands dirty for the greater good.

He’s plumbed luxury homes, commercial buildings, and a water park. Now he’s bringing clean water—and the skills needed to keep it flowing—to Haiti.

Read the full interview

One day after working at the site of the KFDCO (Kidney Failure Dialysis Charity Clinic), presently under construction in Addis Ababa, I noticed a large sign displaying a plumbing product training session at the entrance to the Ghion Hotel where I was staying while working with the construction crew.

I thought it would be interesting to partake and learn at this training session, as the IPS pipe and fittings was the preferred product of choice for the conditioned water recirculation loop to the kidney dialysis machines in the new clinic. After a warm welcome by all, I participated in the training along with the KFDCO Administrator Alemayehu Workshet…true to form plumbers do ask the same questions the world over…

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Read Dom’s letter about his trip

Fred Schilling returns to an improving but still tenuous situation in island nation struggling to bounce back from natural disaster.
As Haiti struggles to recover from the 2010 earthquake that killed more than 300,000 people and devastated much of the nation’s infrastructure, the effort continues to provide residents there with safe drinking water.

Last May, plumber Fred Schilling spent a week in Haiti teaching plumbing workshops and helping students from Haiti Tec install a water-purification system from start to finish. The system had been designed and donated by Water World Partners, a student group at Seattle University.

Read the full article

Returning from a life-changing journey to Ethiopia, along with a diverse team of volunteer doctors, and medical professionals from the Seattle Anesthesia Outreach (SAO), Fred Volkers and Domenico DiGregorio embarked on the initial phase of implementing several plumbing infrastructure improvements in local medical facilities.
As we described in our last post, the unthinkable conditions at Black Lion hospital in Addis Ababa, as well as the urgent need for a Dialysis facility in a nearby hospital, captured our attention, both from a human standpoint, but especially as plumbers….we knew we could make a difference.

Standing face-to-face with many hopeful dialysis patients, who we knew would die without this life-saving equipment, our quest was clear and our resolve strengthened.

Thanks to Fred Volkers and Stirrett Johnsen Mechanical Contractors (Seattle), arrangements are underway for procuring the equipment needed to build and set up a shipping container-ized dialysis facility, which can be installed (plug & play) upon arrival to Ethiopia.

Read Dom’s letter about his trip

It may not be the most glamorous job, but it’s certainly one of the most important: bringing in the water and moving out the waste. “Plumbers Without Borders” are bringing basic needs to people in need around the world and doing a dirty job for free.

Fred Schilling donates his time and considerable expertise to help Haitian people obtain safe, clean drinking water.

In nearly four decades as a plumber, there isn’t much that Fred Schilling hasn’t seen. Since beginning his career with the U.S. military and becoming one of south Florida’s youngest-ever Certified Master Plumbers in 1976 with a perfect 100 percent on the exam, Schilling estimates that he has been involved in about 800 construction projects over 36 years, including virtually every type of large-scale project imaginable. This includes, schools, hospitals, hotels, shopping centers and even Six Flags Atlantis, which when build in the early 1980s was the world’s largest water theme park.

His latest endeavor, however, could be his most daunting – and rewarding – yet: helping bring clean, safe drinking water to the people of Haiti.

Read the full article

We want to share with you that one of our members, Fred C. Schilling, a Certified Master Plumber, Backflow Tester and Backflow Repair technician in Florida, is headed to Haiti next week May 9th, 2012, to work with Water for Humans ( on a water-purification system.

Our hats off to Fred, as well as our heartfelt Thanks for his deep personal concern and willingness to serve in the collective effort to help bring some relief to the people of Haiti, suffering from drinking contaminated water and lack of sanitation.

Frederick C Schilling Jr., born at “Flushing Hospital” in New York, (1949) is an interesting origin for someone whom would span six decades dedicated to the “Art” of being a Plumber.

Fred began his formal Plumbing training as a U. S. Air Force Plumber, at Port Hueneme California, with the Navy Seabees and Air Force Civil Engineering. In 1969, he was assigned to Osan Air Base, South Korea, spending over a year working hand in hand with Korean Nationals, many of them, women (some with infants strapped to their backs) constructing new Plumbing Installations.

He became a member of the U. S. Air Force “Red Horse” Combat Construction Squadron which stands for ‘Rapid Engineer Deployable Heavy Operational Repair Engineers’.

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