Bringing Clean Water To Rural Communities

To remain on track to reach the Millennium Development Goal of 85 percent water supply coverage by 2015, access will have to expand steadily while new and existing systems remain operational and affordable. Annual funding for water must at least be sustained at its recent level. Funding for sanitation and environmental health promotion will have to be increased and restructured. Related operational approaches will have to be upgraded. Under the countrywide decentralization policy, these challenges will have to be met largely at the district level despite pervasive capacity gaps. Rapid urbanization calls for targeted programs to serve poor urban households and enlist consumer engagement and feedback in the regulatory process for water-supply and sanitation services.

IDA’s Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Project targeted provision of basic drinking water facilities to serve about 370,000 people in rural areas and the promotion of better household sanitation and hygiene. The project’s simple water supply and sanitation systems are planned, operated and maintained by water users' associations (WUAs) with private sector support in communities that most need improved services. Grants—along with technical assistance—go directly to communities for constructing water and sanitation facilities.

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