Integrated water, sanitation and hygiene for women and the marginalized –
Villagers and city-dwellers in northern Ghana are better managing human waste, thanks to this
project. It takes an integrated approach to water management, including building latrines and
promoting permaculture activities like composting. The initiative is improving hygiene in
communities where it works, while increasing water quality at the same time.
- 120 communities in target area
- 30 communities certified to be free of open defecation
- 20 water systems installed
- 10 sanitation systems installed
Sanitation facilities in many areas of Africa are lacking, leading to pollution of the land and
water, as well as creating health hazards.
A consortium of Ghanaian non-governmental organizations is working with the Dutch WASH Alliance on community-led sanitation in
northern Ghana, including the city of Tamale. Communities are empowered to establish plans for how to
manage garbage and prevent open defecation. The project helps them to install latrines and toilets in homes
and schools. Through the project, communities are getting water and hand-washing systems, and being
educated on better hygiene.
The project is also promoting water conservation and aquaculture along rivers in northern Ghana, and
facilitated a compost firm in producing more organic compost for local farmers.
Helping the planet
Rivers in the region benefit from less pollution. Water conservation efforts have improved air humidity,
staving off desertification from the encroaching Sahara, and even increased rainfall in some areas. Use of
compost by local farmers is improving the soil’s capacity to hold moisture, further helping create
Improved sanitation prevents the spread of illness, improving the health of those in the communities. Since
water quality has improved, people there don’t have to walk as far to fetch water. Promotion of
aquaculture and composting are contributing to higher yields, improving food security.
The project is based on local financing, decreasing dependency on external funding and allowing for follow
through. The focus on local materials and technologies could also help the project grow.
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