Monitoring sanitation and hygiene infrastructure at commune level through mobile phones

This project is completed

In partnership with the Akvo Foundation, SNV tested the use of mobile phones through the Akvo Flow tool for the monitoring of water and sanitation services in the municipalities of Kombissiri and Pissila in Burkina Faso.

This project is within the context of decentralization running in Burkina Faso, which gives communities the skills to manage development locally. This also in relation to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). To provide sustainable access to water and sanitation services, a reliable and effective system of monitoring is needed. The ambition of this pilot project is to test and put technology at the disposal of communal actors, thus facilitating the monitoring of the sector at the municipal, regional and national level. Maps were produced that showed the status of field works (1,000 water points and sanitation facilities in 1,500 households), making them a powerful decision tool for the various actors, including actively involved state structures.


1. Training of actors

To ensure all the actors had the same level of understanding and to enable them to effectively play their roles, SNV provided them with training - including the general secretaries of municipalities, the focal points of the drinking water supply programme, and administrators platforms.

2. Data collection

Surveys were conducted in October 2014 which led to 2,093 data in the municipalities of Kombissiri and Pissila on the following groups:

  • Drinking water supply and water and sanitation programme
  • Family sanitation
  • Institutional and public sanitation
  • Wells and human-operated pumps


3. Data Analysis

The data collected concerned the water works in both municipalities. In total, 1,094 water works were subject to data collection, 565 and 529 respectively in the municipalities of Kombissiri and Pissila. The following parameters were filled out for the water works: type of water source, functionality, age, lessor, management structure, existence of a savings account for maintenance, etc. The resulting maps displayed the state of field works and thus constituted a powerful decision tool for the different actors. Sanitation was also reflected in a 10% sample of households spread over the two municipal areas; 769 and 755 households were surveyed respectively. The aspects surveyed per household were: existence of purification works, type of work, sharing work between households, cleanliness, cost of work, source of funding, recipient household's contribution, etc. With these data, the tool could also add photos and geographic coordinates of the works.

Following this pilot, SNV has developed a scaling document for the use of the Akvo FLOW tool. In addition, in partnership with Akvo, we launched another mobile phone based application for the testing of water quality. Several consultation meetings with the regional directorate of water have identified the central plateau region as a pilot area. The training of actors and data collection took place by the end of 2015.

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