Sustainable Water and Sanitation in Africa (SUWASA)

Under USAID’s Water II IQC, SUWASA promoted innovative reforms and sustainable financing for water and sanitation. As a subcontractor to Tetra Tech ARD, DIG served as the primary partner on innovative financing for water and sanitation services. DIG conducted missions to design projects in Kenya, Senegal and Mali to facilitate innovative partnerships among banks, utility companies, small service providers and CBOs. (2009-2013)

Under SUWASA, DIG has achieved the following:  

In Kenya, DIG implemented the first long-term project to be funded under SUWASA: the SUWASA Kenya Initiative.

SUWASA Kenya was a two and a half-year project promoting innovative financing for water and sanitation in two primary cities in Kenya. Under this initiative, DIG helped utilities access USD 255,720 in capital, which enabled them to expand their water and sanitation services to informal settlements. Based on this success, USAID is providing funding to scale up the innovative model to up to six additional cities in Kenya.

Capitalizing on SUWASA Kenya I’s experience in innovative water financing, SUWASA Kenya II replicated the success throughout Kenya. The USAID-funded SUWASA Kenya II project brought affordable, clean water to low-income communities in Kenya through innovative financing arrangements among banks, utilities and the urban poor. DIG strengthened commercial banks’ capacity to design and deliver customized loan products for utilities needing capital. This helped banks facilitate commercially viable water sector deals. DIG also built utilities’ capacity to develop bankable infrastructure financing proposals and improve household service delivery. With collaborating sector partners, SUWASA Kenya II identified potential investments of more than $36 million among 29 urban utilities, including network extensions and rehabilitation, household connections, non-revenue water reduction and installation of energy-saving and renewable energy improvements, among others. This financially sustainable model aligned incentives of utilities, banks, and consumers. Results included increased first time water access, improved access to water, reduced water costs for end users, and increased profitability of utilities and banks. This program serves as a model for larger regional initiatives in Africa. (2013-2015)

In Senegal, DIG helped to identify sustainable solutions to fecal sludge management by examining stakeholder roles and capacity, current sanitation practices, and existing disposal facilities.

DIG analyzed existing challenges and potential opportunities to improve the efficiency and sustainability of the fecal sludge management system. To achieve this objective, DIG built stakeholder consensus at the national government, municipal, and service provider levels to establish public-private partnerships between the local government and fecal sludge haulers (vidangeurs) to promote affordable and safe fecal sludge extraction, transportation, disposal, and treatment.

In Mali, DIG recommended the design of a sustainable sanitation framework that builds on and reinforces decentralization reforms and that maximizes available resources to increase access to adequate sanitation.

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