Enabling the sanitation environment for private actors


News

Transform WASH project has brought together sanitation marketing stakeholders to create enabling environment for the business.

Ethiopia has set WASH targets and developed guiding documents to attain its vision of becoming lower middle income country by 2025, improve the sanitation and hygiene situation and reduce death from preventable diseases. The effort is assumed to increase access to improved latrines and handwashing facilities to 82%, make the same percent of kebeles Open Defecation Free, to increase rural water supply access to 85% and reduce non-functionality rate of rural water schemes to 7%.

To support the government’s effort in achieving these targets, SNVPSIPlan International Ethiopia and IRC have partnered in USAID Transform WASH project. The partnership aims to reduce preventable deaths and illnesses in Ethiopia due to diarrhoeal diseases through transforming WASH governance and management capacity, improve the supply and demand of sanitation products and services, and increase the knowledge base to facilitate implementation at scale.

Among others, the major bottlenecks in improving water, sanitation and hygiene situation in the country are low WASH capacity and coordination, lack of access to finance and limited participation of the private sector.

As a lead Transform WASH partner in increasing WASH governance and management capacity at the subnational level, SNV has brought together sanitation marketing stakeholders from its nine intervention woredas and three zones of SNNPR. The key stakeholders include Health and Water Sector, TVETC, Small and Medium Enterprise/Job Creation, Microfinance Institutions, Private Sector/ entrepreneurs, Academic and Professional Institutions.

These stakeholders agreed to take the message home and design ways of improving the sanitation marketing business. A Technical, Vocational and Educational Collage (TVETC) Dean promised to share the information to the management so that the institution includes sanitation marketing course in the sanitation department. “Needs assessment is one of the activities to improve courses at TVETC. I have learnt that there is a growing need in sanitation products and services” added Workneh Tafese.

The WASH technical team leader and Wolayeta Zone Water Minerals and Energy Department Deputy Bureau Head, Temesegen Alemayehu, has taken assignment for the team. Enhancing the sanitation marketing enterprises in the zone, he has planned to benefit multiple sectors through engaging the producers in production and distribution of fuel efficient stoves and rope bump slabs.

The Microfinance institutions have also used the platform to promote their services and discuss on possible ways of mutual benefit.

Southern Nations Nationalities and Peoples Region Health Bureau, Hygiene and Environmental Health Team Coordinator, Male Matie, said there are initiatives in sanitation marketing. We have to learn from these experiences and work together to diversify the products and make the business sustainable.

Representatives/heads of woreda Health Offices took the assignment to lead the design of Joint Woreda Sanitation and Hygiene Action plans, which will give more focus to sanitation marketing and frame, strategies and harmonise the engagement of all stakeholders in sanitation and hygiene, in general, and sanitation marketing, in particular.

Through development and testing of scalable and replicable market-based models, the Transform WASH activity will support the Government of Ethiopia and the One WASH National Programme to increase use of improved WASH products and services.

Transform WASH is a five year USAID funded project. It is implemented by PSI - the lead of the consortium, SNV, Plan International Ethiopia and IRC in 40 woredas of SNNPR, Amhara, Tigray, Oromia, Afar, Somali, Benishangul Gumuz regional states and Dire Dawa City Administration.

As the the project is following the Phase-based approach, in its first year, has started implementation in nine woredas of SNNPR; and scaled to 11 woredas of three new regions: Oromia (6), Amhara (4) and Benishangul Gumuz. In SNNPR, 170 regional, zonal and woreda level WASH technical team members have received capacity building trainings in WASH related policies, strategies and guidelines, WASH Strategic Plan Development, Procurement, Ccontract Administration and Financial Management, and Project Cycle Management focusing on Monitoring and Evaluation.

Expert

Michael Negash

Institutional Development Adviser/ Project Manager