USAID united Communities to bring Water to All

Speeches Shim

Wednesday, April 8, 2020
Beneficiaries collecting safe drinking water from one of the community-managed water point in Funda area, Municipality Caucuaco, in Luanda Province.
Photo Credit: G. Figueiredo, USAID/Angola

82,416  people gained access to clean water as a result of USAID intervention.

Water is one of the most important resources in our planet, people, animals and plants, all need water for survival. For 47% of the population in Angola, clean drinking water is more valuable than the real black gold in the second largest oil producer in Africa. Angola has one of the world’s highest child mortality rates, with 72 deaths in 1000 children before they complete the age of 5. According to UNICEF’s Promise Renewed 2015 Annual Report, 14 % of the child deaths in Angola are caused by unsafe water sources or waterborne diseases or worsening the prevalence of malnutrition. In 2017 the first Demographic Health Survey in country reported that just over half of households, 53% have access to appropriate drinking water sources,
67% of which in urban areas 32% in rural areas.

To improve public health indicators of the poor Angolan families through increased access to sustainable and affordable water and sanitation services, USAID through its Community-Managed Water and Sanitation project, implemented by Development Workshop, in the past 5 years has been working with the central and local governments and civil society to roll out Angola’s first water and sanitation governance policy, that fundamentally aims to establish lay out the foundations of sustainable management of water systems. The Government has invested in the last 10 years a huge amount of financial resources in building water infrastructures but has failed to establish sustainable maintenance and management mechanisms.  The project intervened in the decentralization of management of water systems; brought community participation, cost recovery, and establishment of partnership. Through mobilization, the project provides the tools (training and day-day on-the-job mentoring) for communities to manage and maintain the operation of the water systems in their jurisdiction without much involvement from the local water authorities.

Through the Community- Managed Water and Sanitation project, we “national and municipal administrations staff” received training on how to plan and monitor which helped increase access to clean water and sanitation services...
- Comments from a staff member of Municipal Administration of Cacuaco

Through a community water management activities, USAID helped ensure affordable access to clean drinking water for 82,416 consumers, establish 260 community structures of water management, provided to 19,122 children in 31 schools with access to containers for hand washing facilities as part of hygiene campaigns, 767 families benefited with improved latrines, and 21,805 households adhered to good practices of hygiene and health in rural and peri-urban municipalities in the provinces of Cunene, Huambo, Kwanza-Sul and Luanda. As a result of these activities, the project exceeded on its initial target of 36,000 people with access to safe drinking water, and it is estimated that more than 50% of the beneficiaries are free of diseases from contaminated water. Consequently, it has reduced the burden of hospitalizations and deaths in the four targeted provinces. It is important to mention the impact of the multiplier effect of the project that has expanded the number of municipalities initially targeted, 10 to currently 17 as there’s an increased interest of these administrations due to the demonstrated success of the project.