Finish Society, India receives the prestigious Young entrepreneurs Award 2017 in this year's "Sarphati Sanitation Awards" presented at the opening ceremony of Amsterdam International Water Week on 30 October 2017.
Mr. Abhijit Banerji of FINISH Society won the category prize of Euro 25,000. As part of the Amsterdam conference, Mr. Banerji was invited to give keynote speech during the 'Sarphati Sanitation Solutions Seminar' on 31 October - which included experiences from India– as well as speakers from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and UN-HABITAT. For the rest, delegates agreed that construction of toilets can be a profitable business, but that governments still need to remove barriers for the sale or reuse of products made from toilet waste. The 'Financial Inclusion Improves Sanitation and Health' (FINISH) Society is an NGO working in India and Kenya under the auspices of UNU-MERIT, WASTE, ACTIAM and Take-a-Stake Fund. The 'Sarphati Sanitation Award' was inspired by Dr. Samuel Sarphati, a doctor who contributed to the cholera free status of the City of Amsterdam as far back as the end of the nineteenth century. He achieved this by initiating a business to collect and transport human excreta out of town and use it as fertiliser to grow crops, thus improving the health status of the fast growing population of Amsterdam. World Waternet, Netherlands Water Partnership and Aqua for All initiated the biennial Sarphati Sanitation Award in 2013 to honour the outstanding contribution of individuals or organisations to the global sanitation and public health challenge through entrepreneurship. The Sarphati Sanitation Awards Jury consists of Her Excellency Ms Lidi Remmelzwaal (Chairperson), Dr Arno Rosemarin, Dr Claire Furlong, Prof Dr Ir Sybe Schaap and Dr Graham Alabaster