Accra floods

Stakeholders implementing water, sanitation and hygiene interventions in disaster prone communities (WASH DPC) in the Upper East Region, have said WASH facilities were resilient and could serve as safe haven in flood situations in the region.

Under the WASH DPC interventions, sanitation facilities and tools were constructed over the period of 2014 – 2017 in 222 schools including; kindergartens to serve as safe haven during flooding.

It reached out to 323,416 at the end of its period by constructing flood resilient water supply facilities in communities, and institutional sanitation facilities in schools, complemented by appropriate software activities.
Other facilities include; School buildings and washrooms on high ground in various communities.

This was made known at a two day workshop in Bolgatanga, aimed at building the capacity of stakeholders especially technical teams, to discuss sustainability issues of the WASH DPC interventions, to ensure operations, maintenance, and management of the facilities to enable them stand the test of time.

The workshop which was coordinated by the Ministry of Sanitation, Water Resources (MSWR) initiated processes to sustain achievements made and also help build capacity of participants to be able to conduct field assessment of potential faulty facilities that will require minimum supervision.

Meanwhile out of the 200,000 targeted population, the project reached out to 323,416 people in the 265 targeted communities in 24 districts of the three regions of the north, presently increased to six regions.

Mr Eric Moukoro, the Programme Manager of UN-Habitat WASH DPC who briefed the media on the sidelines of the workshop, indicated that WASH facilities provided during the three-year intervention period were in good shape.

“More communities however will still need help in the surge of the floods”, he said.
Mr Moukoro thanked Canada for the 900million Canadian dollar funding for the implementation of the three year WASH DPC projects and said the challenges were still high and some areas there were susceptible to sanitation challenges and needed attention.

The joint WASH programme in disaster prone communities was implemented to improve health and livelihoods of people in 24 districts in the three regions of the north with services targeted at 200,000 people including; 50,000 school children in the communities.

Mr Kweku Quansah, the Deputy Director, Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources, earlier highlighted the successes chalked under the project which included the development of Development Risk Reduction (DRR ) tool kit ,a compendium of WASH facilities and technical guidelines in the implementation of the programme.

He said the joint contributions of UN Habitat, WHO, UNDP and UNICEF with support of government institutions such as NADMO and other private organizations in WASH and disaster management in the country played a key role in the success of the projects.

He congratulated all stakeholders for the good works and noted that out of the 265 targeted communities, 271 communities were covered, using community led total sanitation (CLTs) approach.

The project also sought to ensure resilience of the facilities to climate change related disaster, promote behaviour change towards proper water, sanitation and hygiene practices.

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