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The project will comprise of the following three components:
(i) Water Supply Infrastructure;
(ii) Sanitation and Hygiene; and
(iii) Capacity Development and Project Management.
(i)Water Supply Infrastructure Development: This will focus on the rehabilitation for expansion of twelve gravity fed water supply schemes (GFS) in the five districts of Rumphi (northern region), Nkhotakota and Ntcheu (central region), Mangochi and Phalombe (southern region). The project will also support the construction of approximately 400 new boreholes in areas not covered by GFS. This component will also support protection measures for the catchments upstream of raw water intakes in order to sustain water sources for the targeted water supply schemes. It will also support the installation of groundwater monitoring and river hydrometry stations in key locations, as well as rehabilitation of two water quality laboratories (one in Blantyre and the other in Lilongwe) to enhance monitoring of water quality and pollution.
(ii)Sanitation and Hygiene: This component will support the promotion of open defecation-free (ODF) communities and improved household sanitation through sanitation marketing, improved hygiene practices. It will entail the construction of institutional sanitation facilities in public schools, markets and health centres.
(iii)Capacity Development and Project Management: The project will support capacity building of the District Coordination Team (DCTs), communities and staff in the Ministry of Water Development Irrigation to effectively manage and development the water and sanitation sector in the districts. Given these responsibilities and the critical role of local authorities in ensuring the sustainability of investments in the sector, the majority of institutional support and capacity building work will be directed to this level and to support Community Based Management (CBM) including the establishment of Water Users Associations for the water supply schemes. This component will also support the review of the National Water Policy (2005). This component will also support project management services, monitoring and evaluation, and auditing services to ensure that the project is implemented in time and that the project objectives are attained.
Poor water supply and sanitation has long been regarded as a constraint to inclusive economic growth. Inadequate access to clean safe water supply and adequate sanitation especially in rural areas is a major contributing factor to poverty. The amount of time and effort spent on daily chores of water collection, and in caring for those suffering from water and sanitation-related diseases, decreases opportunities for engaging in productive activities. With improved water supply and a dequate sanitation provision, the reduction of time spent on fetching water and the positive health impact through reduced morbidity will allow the population in the project areas to increase productive and income generating activities. This will ultimately lead to more inclusive growth outcomes.
With 80% of the Malawi population living in the rural areas, water remains a key priority both for the social and economic development of the country. About 17% of Malawians (2.55 million people) do not have access to improved water supply and 45% (7.35 million) do not have access to improved sanitation. There is also a need to better manage the country's water resources in order to improve water allocation and equitability. Similarly, there is a need for investments to improve growth in water dependent economic sectors (agriculture, energy and industry). While investments in the sector have increased over the past years, a further increase is needed to meet the country's goals as articulated in the Malawi Growth and Development Strategy (MGDSII, 2011 - 2016).
The proposed project will address one pillar of the Country Strategy Paper (CSP, 2013 -2017): 'Address Infrastructure bottlenecks to Competitiveness and Growth' and will contribute to three CSP outcomes, namely:
(i) increased access to water;
(ii) increased access to sanitation; and
(iii) improved institutional capacity for water resources management. The project will finance scale up impacts of the earlier Bank intervention by adding on to previously funded components as well as funding additional activities.
The project will increase coverage of sustainable and clean water to a total population of approximately 516,000 and will increase coverage of improved and inclusive sanitation to a total population of about 575,000 including pupils in public primary schools. It is expected that about 52% of the beneficiaries will be female. In addition to preventing more than 45,000 people from contracting malaria through provision of mosquito nets, the project will create more than 6,760 jobs including 750 for the youths in bee keeping as part of sustainable catchment management. The project will also improve resilience of water resources with related improved community management to sustain water supply and sanitation facilities.
PHIRI Lazarus Botoman - RDGS4