7 April 2011 zichtbaarzijn

By André Engelbertink

Kenya is one of the countries in which the WASH alliance is implementing a Water, Sanitation and Hygienprogramme. 6 Dutch Organisations(Simavi, ICCO, RAIN, AMREF, WASTE and Akvo)work together with a number of Kenyan Organisations in the semi arid region of Kajiado.

In February 2011 Waste/ICCO organized a joint mapping exercise to identify partnership opportunities within business and financial sectors to strengthen the WASH sector in Kajiadoand to further define roles and contributions of ICCO and WASTE respectively. Andre Engelbertink of FSAS took part in this mapping exercise on behalf of ICCO. Kajiado region was selected as area of intervention in Kenya because it faces a number of water, santitation and hygiene problems. Water coverage (distance to water source) is low, moreover a number of water sources have a (too) high saline content. Sanitation facilities are generally poor developed within the Maasai community because of their nomadic character. But over the years it are more and more only the men who are moving with their cattle, leaving women and children behind in semi-permanent structures. Sanitation and hygiene is becoming increasingly important for these communities. The mapping exercise was undertaken in close collaboration with the Kenyan partners already part of the Kenyan Wash Alliance that has been formed in the past years.

Some remarkable findings of this mapping exercise:

  1. The strong involvement of the business sector in the water supply (drilling ,watersupply,trading). Local government and the Water companies (more or less parastatals)have failed already for many years in providing water within acceptable distance of households and communities. Water is now priced commercially.
  2. The financial sector has developed strongly in recent years in the area. Despite severe droughts in recent years it was noted that there is substantial (trading)businessin the region.
  3. NGO’s play an important role in the WASH sector. Some good results have been achieved in the WASH sector but activities heavily depend on external donorfunding. Community contribution is modest.

There are opportunities for more sustainable interventions and more collaboration with financial and private sector. The verification workshop organized at the end of our stay showed already the eagerness of especially the financial sector to participate in programme activities. Moreover traditional limiting factors as collateral requirements and high interest ratesare nowadays within acceptable standardsdue to the strong competition. The team concluded that there were conducive factors present for collaboration with the business and financial sector in improving the WASH sector and develop sustainable interventions. Currently interventions by ICCO and WASTE are now formulated.

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