USAID and Rotary International adopt innovative sustainability monitoring tool | Source: Harold Lockwood, Water Services That Last – August 12, 2013 |
This is great news and fantastic to see USAID adopting and promoting this approach which aims to really track and better understand the underlying causes of poor sustainability in the WASH sector. Sustaining WASH services is complex and dependent not only the hardware (the pumps, latrines and pipes), but also a range of the so-called software elements, for example reliable management entities, long-term external support and monitoring, adequate financing and so on. Measuring coverage is one thing, looking at functionality is also a useful proxy, but if we really want to know where the pinch-points are and how something so seemingly simple as water flowing out of a tap can fall down, it requires a comprehensive and powerful tool.
This is just what USAID and Rotary International have developed with the new Sustainability Index Tool, or SIT, which has just been released and is available for download on the WASHPlus website here. The tool was developed by Aguaconsult over a period of more than a year and a half and has been tested in three country programmes, with a further two countries being rolled out in the coming months.
Even as political leaders chant the Mantra of New Nepal, a grim reality is that over 60 percent of Nepalese are yet to have access to toilet [and the country] is in no position to achieve a target to provide sanitation for all by 2017. The recent sector review on community level models for financing sanitation in rural Nepal conducted by WaterAid Nepal and the Asian Development Bank reveals how resources spent by various agencies to meet the ambitious target is virtually being drained in vain thanks to lack of coordination.
[…] Jamuna Bishwokarma, 45, [from] Lele Village Development Committee, Lalitpur district […] is yet to pay back the Rs3,000 (US$ 40) loan she took to build a toilet. In less than two years, her toilet has turned non-functional thanks to lack of maintenance.
[…] There is a rush for construction of toilet but hardly anybody keeps in mind the question of sustainability and economic affordability.
Read more: Keshab Poudel, Media For Freedom, 16 Oct 2008