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Before yesterdayIRC Water

IRC and partners convene equity and inclusion side event at Mole WASH Conference XXXII

8 December 2021 at 11:46
By: awumbei

The side-session on equity and inclusion was opened with a short video documentary on reaching the hard-to-access communities and schools in Asutifi North District of the Ahafo Region of Ghana.

IRC Ghana in collaboration with the coalition of NGOs in water and sanitation (CONIWAS) and equity and inclusion champions convened a talk-show side event on the theme, ‘Strong WASH system needs equitable and inclusive effort to deliver the SDG targets’ at the 32nd edition of the Mole Water Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) conference on November 3, 2021, in Ejisu near Kumasi in the Ashanti Region of Ghana.

 Vida Duti, IRC Country Director Ghana, second from right

Vida Duti, IRC Ghana Country Director stated in her opening comments as one of the expert panel discussants, “ensuring universal access to safe and affordable WASH for all by 2030 requires strong WASH systems to deliver the targets. And strong WASH systems rely on equitable and inclusive multiple actors to deliver safe and sustainable WASH services to everyone.” She used the analogy of a radio set that requires functional parts to be fully operational to further explain the WASH system, stating that the relevant building blocks need to be in place and strengthened to enable the delivery of WASH services to all.

“This interactive talk show session with sector champions helps to practically unpack equity and inclusion issues within the context of WASH systems strengthening, share experiences and reflect on how to reach the hard-to-reach and the excluded; and also what various actors need to know and do to ensure inclusive advance towards universal access - leaving no one behind,” Vida added.

To set the context for the one-and-half hour side session, a short video documentary on reaching the hard-to-access communities and schools in Asutifi North District of the Ahafo Region of Ghana was shown, highlighting the WASH situation of the excluded schools and communities and the drive under the Asutifi North Ahonedia Mpuntuo (ANAM) initiative to achieve services for everyone by 2030.

Two presenters at the side event of Mole Conference XXXII 

Umaru-Sanda Amadu, a popular local radio and television presenter with Accra based CitiFM/ TV facilitated the follow-up expert panel talk show featuring Yaw Obeng-Poku, Director at the Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources; Vida Duti, IRC Country Director; Awudu Modoc, Executive Director, Afram Plains Development Organisation; Victoria Norgbey, Executive Director, Apex Body of Women in Poultry Value Chain; and Emmanuel Marfo, CEO of Global Alliance for Development Foundation.

Talk show Reflections

The talk-show delved into WASH sector progress status, the WASH system, equity and inclusion in WASH issues - barriers to inclusion and what it takes to bridge the gaps. The session also elicited expert panel perspectives to deepen awareness and interest around the challenges of inclusion to inform the advocacy for all-inclusive WASH prioritisation and action towards achieving Sustainable Development Goal 6.

The discussants acknowledged that Ghana is making steady progress towards achieving the WASH targets and a range of social protection and inclusion programmes developed and being implemented, and that lingering exclusions and equity issues indicate the need to intensify more targeted and harmonised advocacy efforts towards establishing inclusive and resilient delivery mechanisms for WASH services to all – including hard-to-access communities and inner-city residents.

The session reflected on the commitment of the country to achieving universal and equitable access to safe and affordable drinking water for all – noting that a safely managed drinking water service is from an improved source that is located on premises, available when needed and free from contamination. It was admitted that unless deliberate and inclusive measures are taken to accelerate accessibility on premises whilst reaching the hard-to-access communities, achieving safely managed and universal coverage targets may prove difficult.

Discussion during the side event at the Mole Conference XXXII

The interactive session called for, i) an appropriate and innovative mix of water supply technologies and user-friendly delivery methods to be deployed in hard-to-access communities to provide safe water to everyone in an equitable manner; ii) a systems approach backed by enabling environment is needed to entice and motivate social enterprises and private sector investments and partnerships to accelerate WASH service delivery to all; iii) continuous community sensitisation on issues of equity and inclusion and periodic capacity enhancement of water and sanitation management teams for effective operation and maintenance of water facilities; and iv) research, innovation and learning on good inclusion practices, models, approaches and technologies should be documented and promoted for uptake and replication.

The side session further called on the Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources to consider equity and inclusion issues in the ongoing sector policy reviews; revise the Ghana WASH sector gender mainstreaming guidelines and toolkit; and to co-ordinate the roll-out training and mainstreaming into WASH plans and processes at all levels.

In his short remarks, Attah Arhin, chairman of CONIWAS assured participants that matters arising from the discussions and the recommendations made will inform the conference communiqué. He pledged the commitment of the coalition in working with partners like IRC to uphold issues of inclusion, empower citizens and collectively advocate for the elimination of barriers to social inclusion.

Umaru-Sanda Amadu brought the session to a close with a call on participants to continue to reflect as individuals and institutions on how to ensure inclusive advance towards universal access bearing in mind that - “Inclusion is not just about improving access to services for those who are currently excluded but also empowering people to engage in wider processes of decision making to ensure that their rights and needs are recognised."

About fifty (50) stakeholders drawn from local and national government institutions, private sector, research institutions, local and international NGOs, and the media were at the side event. Overall, the side event was considered by most participants as very interactive and revealing.

ANAM partners launch WASH services to hard-to-reach communities

4 August 2021 at 11:53
By: awumbei

This is the launch of the WASH for hard-to-reach households project. The team is visiting Bronyakrom, a hard-to-reach community that has been connected to a water point.

On July 06, 2021, in Bronyakrom, IRC in collaboration with the Asutifi North District Assembly and partners hosted the official sod-cutting ceremony for the WASH services to hard-to-reach communities project to mark the start of the initiative in the district.

Following the initial project activities including the selection of the hard-to-reach communities, work had started and the Bronyakrom royal event was to formally announce the initiative and showcase the construction of a new borehole facility to provide the community with access to water services.

Bronyakrom is a farming community with an estimated population of over 150 and is located about 8km away from Kenyasi, the district capital of the Asutifi North District. The community has no access to water services. For this reason, community members had to make about 1-hour round trip including queueing to access water in the next community.

With funding from the LDSC through IRC, World Vision International, an implementing partner of the project, drilled a productive well with a depth of 36 meters and a yield of 25 liters per minute. The tested water passed all the physicochemical and bacteriological parameters per WHO and Ghana Standard Authority guidelines. The borehole is yet to be fitted with a hand pump but has a well-constructed platform and a wastewater trough. The Water, Sanitation, and Management Team (WSMT) has been constituted to manage the facility. Team members have also been trained in facility management, revenue generation, records keeping, sanitation, and hygiene.

The chief and people of Bronyakrom gladly greeted the visiting IRC senior leadership team, the LDSC team, and the safe water strategy partners with traditional welcome songs.

This video gives highlights of the Bronyakrom sod-cutting event and impressions of the visiting team.

 

ANAM Small Grant Opportunity for NGOs

23 April 2021 at 16:31
By: awumbei

Asutifi North District Assembly in collaboration with its partners have prepared a 13-year Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) Master Plan. This is an initiative that seeks to promote universal access to safe water, basic sanitation, and hygiene services to about 84,420 people by the year 2030.

A strong local civil society is essential to improving WASH service delivery and sustaining the water resources. Within the WASH master plan, Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) have been identified to support WASH through allied action, advocacy, and engagement with the people to build popular support and transparency within the initiative.

Intent

The ANAM Small Grant Opportunity aims to support selected Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) in the Asutifi North District to develop advocacy initiatives in the following areas:

  • Sustaining behaviour changes in hand hygiene beyond COVID-19
  • Improving access to WASH services for vulnerable and excluded populations including people with disabilities
  • Reduce inequalities in the allocation of resources for WASH services
  • Improved Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) services and sustainable Water Resources Management (WRM)
  • Improving gender equity and social inclusion in WASH  

The grant will support selected NGOs to carry out public education and sensitisation in Asutifi North District to complement ongoing efforts by the ANAM partners to achieve universal WASH coverage.

Entry information

The ANAM Small Grant Opportunity is open to all registered NGOs operating in the Asutifi North District. To be considered in this grant, NGOs need to submit advocacy proposals on at least one of the above areas to be implemented in 2021 in Asutifi North District within a period of five (5) months starting in June 2021. Note that one proposal per focus area is allowed but applicants are free to submit more than one proposal. Please use the proposal format attached for the application (see downloads below).

Eligibility

The civil society organisation – NGO, CSO, etc. should be a body registered with the Government of Ghana and the Asutifi North District Assembly; and operating in the Asutifi North District of the Ahafo Region of Ghana. The activities will complement activities within the ANAM District full coverage initiative that started in 2018.

Grant information

Funds for this grant is from the Hilton Foundation, through IRC Ghana as part of the district-based initiative in collaboration with the ANAM partners.

The total grant sum is Fifty Thousand Ghana Cedis (50,000 GHS). The maximum grant per project/NGO will be Ten Thousand Ghana Cedis (10,000 GHS).

Assessment  

The selection and award of the grant will be done in May 2021 by a panel of judges with expertise in WASH service delivery and behaviour change communications. The assessment will consider the potential effectiveness of proposed campaigns - Awareness raising; Promotion of best practices; Strengthening local partnerships; Improved participation; Community action; Local innovation and Policy influencing.

Contact

If you have any questions, please do ask for help – Contact the help desk at IRC Ghana: Email: Ghana@ircwash.org or call: +233 (302) 797 473 /74 or ANAM toll free number: 0800304000. See further information on the initiative at www.anamwash.com 

Please Note – Submit Proposals (soft copies only) to Ghana@ircwash.org by May 15, 2021 at twelve midnight.

             

 

Watershed Ghana partners host end-of-project event in Accra

1 December 2020 at 11:03
By: awumbei

The Watershed end-of-project meeting highlighted the contributions to WASH/IWRM improvements in Ghana and discussed partnerships beyond the project.

A strong civil society is essential for improving water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) and Water Resource Management (WRM) governance, which remains a challenge in achieving universal access to sustainable services.

In the last 5 years, Watershed empowering citizens strategic partnership has been working to increase local CSO / citizen empowerment and engagement with government for WASH and WRM prioritisation, integration, and equitable financing. The strategic partnership between the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs and IRC, Simavi, Wetlands International and Akvo worked in Kenya, Uganda, Ghana, Mali, India, Bangladesh, and The Netherlands.

The programme in Ghana involved local CSO partners including, the Coalition of NGOs in Water and Sanitation (CONIWAS), Hope for Future Generation, Conservation Foundation and Ghana WATSAN Journalist Network.

The Watershed Ghana partnership has delivered many improvements in the governance and management of water resources and WASH services through evidence-based advocacy and strengthened the capacity of local civil society organizations.

With the project closed-up in September 2020, the Watershed Ghana partners hosted the end-of-project event in October 2020 to highlight the contributions of the project towards WASH and WRM improvements in Ghana and to identify and leverage partnerships beyond the project.

Find out more from this video

Post-construction support to Akatsi North and South districts

3 September 2020 at 11:39
By: awumbei

Video stories of change from two Ghanaian districts as a result of post-construction interventions.

IRC Ghana has been providing post-construction support to Akatsi North and South Districts in the Volta Region of Ghana as part of the district system strengthening efforts. This intervention is a move towards professionalising the work of area mechanics and equipping them with the necessary skills to perform their tasks more effectively for improved water service delivery.

"In the light of long-term sustainability of water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) interventions, post-construction support is critical for continued maintenance and operation of rural water systems," IRC Ghana Country Director, Vida Duti noted.

Through IRC Ghana’s work in Akatsi North and South Districts under the Triple-S project, tools were developed in collaboration with the districts to support post-construction support for water facilities. IRC in collaboration with CWSA, worked with the districts to conduct service monitoring over three years. Following up on the previous work and to ensure that progress is being made to achieve the national target of full coverage by 2025 and the SDG of universal coverage by 2030, IRC Ghana has since 2017 provided the local authorities in the two districts with the tools and technical support to position them to lead in the process.

As part of the post-construction intervention in the two districts, the Akatsi South and North District Assemblies in collaboration with IRC Ghana organised a number of training workshops for area mechanics in the two districts to equip them with the skills and knowledge to undertake installation, uninstallation, repair and maintenance of various types of handpumps in the districts.

Earlier this year, the IRC Ghana documentation team visited selected communities in the two districts to collect and document stories of change and lessons emanating from the intervention. The visit to the two districts took place in February 2020, meeting community members, trained artisans, Water and Sanitation Management Team members and District Assembly staff including District Chief Executives in both districts, conducting community visits and interviews. The team was accompanied by staff of the District Assembly in both districts, helping the team in community entry and translations.

The following three short videos highlight the experiences of change in the lives of communities in the two districts as a result of the post-construction support intervention. They represent examples from real-life about how small but targeted interventions towards local system strengthening can make a difference in the lives of many communities in the districts.

These three short videos reflect the perspectives of the community members, area mechanics and the district authorities, respectively.

They trained us to repair the boreholes for the communities

 

 

When they collect revenue from the sale for water, it has most of the times been misapplied

 

It's government's responsibility to ensure communities have good source of water

 

Launch of Good practice for WASH in Ghana booklet

5 August 2020 at 11:15
By: awumbei

National Development Planning Commission - NDPC in collaboration with IRC and partners is disseminating the findings and is further engaging relevant stakeholders on the stories starting with the launch of the Good Practice for WASH in Ghana booklet.

 

launch of NDPC booklet

The Government of Ghana is committed to achieving access to safe water supply and water-related targets of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. With about 10 years left until the 2030 deadline for the Sustainable Development Goals Agenda, there is an urgent need to identify innovative actions that can help fast-track the delivery of the SDGs.
The National Development Planning Commission in collaboration with IRC embarked on a project to collate and publish ongoing innovative interventions on water and sanitation from selected district assemblies; namely Wassa East, Bongo and Asutifi-North District. Fieldwork was carried out from 18th February to 4th March 2020 to ascertain, assess and interact with developers and beneficiaries of the selected WASH projects. The aim of the exercise was to collate and publish these innovative approaches and interventions for the purpose of sharing experiences and lessons learnt to institutions such as MDAs, MMDAs, private sector and CSOs. The main outputs for the exercise which include website publication on the WASH stories (at both NDPC and IRC websites) together with the final WASH document have been prepared.

As part of the way forward to these publications, the NDPC in collaboration with IRC and partners would disseminate the findings and further engage relevant stakeholders on the stories starting with the launch of the Good Practice for WASH in Ghana booklet.

The objective of the programme is to i) raise awareness on the ongoing strategic, innovative WASH interventions identified in the selected districts; ii) highlight major findings in the report; iii) generate further interaction with stakeholders; and iv) provide an opportunity to widen the scope of the interventions to unserved or underserved areas in the country to help attain the national and SDG targets on WASH. Due to the Covid-19 health pandemic, the launch event would be organised within one-and-half hours targeting WASH-related stakeholders and beyond.

Selected stakeholders are invited to join a face-to-face session whilst wider stakeholder participation will be via Microsoft link: Join Here

Programme brief

Time (Day1) Activity Responsibility
9:00 – 9:30 am Registration and Arrival of invited guests and the media NDPC
9:30 – 9:40 am Welcome Address Dr. Kojo Mensah Abrampah, Director-General, NDPC
9:40 – 10:00 am Brief Statements:
                 - Country Director, IRC Ghana
                 - Ministry of MWSR
                 - SDG ICC Coordinator
10:00 – 10:20 am Presentation: Water Stories and Sanitation Tales by NDPC
10:20 – 10:40 am Discussions: Participants
10:40 – 10:50 am Launch of the WASH Report Dr. Kojo Mensah Abrampah, Director-General, NDPC
10:50 – 11:00 am Wrap-up and next steps Dr. Felix Addo-Yobo
11:00 am Refreshment and Departure

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