Community Water, Sanitation and Health Project (COMWASH)

Sub-Saharan Africa - Malawi

2000-2008 | Global Affairs Canada | CAD 12M

Cowater completed this project incollaboration with the Malawi Ministry of Water Development (MWD) and other stakeholders to strengthen capacity to implement sustainable water, sanitation and hygiene programs. The project utilized the demand-responsive approach to address needs in the Thyolo and Phalombe districts, and to support the provision of safe water supply to 340,000 people through construction and rehabilitation of boreholes and gravity-piped water systems. Hygiene and sanitation were promoted through the Participatory Hygiene and Sanitation Transformation (PHAST) methodology and the provision of over 8,000 improved household latrines, using Ecosan technology and hand-washing initiatives. Innovative low-cost technologies were introduced, and demand has increased steadily. The project contributed to poverty reduction by improving the health of the rural people in two of the country’s poorest districts. At the national level, Cowater strengthened operational systems of MWD and the Ministries responsible for Health and Gender Affairs. It also helped prepare five-year District Development Plans; and a capacity development strategy that examined the training needs of community, district assembly, private sector and national ministry stakeholders.


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