3 ways countries can improve water supplies in small towns

by Fadel Ndaw, World Bank Global Water Practice – reblogged from http://blogs.worldbank.org/water/3-ways-countries-can-improve-water-supplies-small-towns

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A public faucet that serves 1,000 families in el Alto, Bolivia. Photo credit: Stephan Bachenheimer / World Bank

Small towns* typically have not been well served by national or regional water utilities. Decentralization has become increasingly widely adopted, but even if local governments at the small town level have the power to operate a water utility, they often lack the capital and skills to do so. In response, some local governments and public institutions concentrate improvements on upgrading public utilities’ operations or strengthening community based management. In other cases, they choose to bring in the private sector knowledge of how to get clean water and sanitation services to more people more efficiently, affordably or sustainably. There is no one solution to addressing often very complex water and sanitation challenges.

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The closer you are, the more sustainable it gets

by Jochen Rudolph, African Development Bank (AfDB)

Through its Rural Water and Sanitation Initiative (RWSSI) the African Development Bank (AfDB)  was the first donor to support the Senegalese initiative “PEPAM” (Programme Eau Potable et Assainissement du Millénaire) in 2004 and has maintained the close partnership ever since. Looking back at the PEPAM experience, we find that strong and sustained commitment to improving rural water supply and sanitation in Senegal has resulted in more facilities than were originally budgeted for being installed and, as a result, has improved the health and quality of life for a large number of beneficiary villages.

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