Identifying and implementing appropriate solutions for water service delivery skills are needed in plant management, financing, equipment procurement, billing, as well as in water conservation and communication between all actors. Today, there are a number of programs taking place globally with help from grants, organizations and foundations to provide people with these skills sets to ensure sustainable growth in relation to water.
Workshops led by organizations such as ICMA teach water quality treatment, testing and control, the physical and chemical characteristics of water, how water comes to be contaminated and the consequences of water health issues. Through presentations, demonstrations and equipment handling sessions ideas are exchanged and knowledge and skills are transferred throughout various levels of society.
In Afghanistan, where only 12 percent of Afghans living in rural areas have access to clean drinking water and population is increasing by 2.2%, self-sustaining water systems are needed to efficiently serve local populations. Like many parts of the world, Afghanistan currently suffers from neglected infrastructures, unreliable and inconvenient water supplies and undetected illegal connections. ICMA along with USAID is trying to address these challenges by ensuring experts are at the local water supply companies, technical assistance, training local staff, and by monitoring targets and incentives.
Initiatives that are working to establish improved water service delivery lead to reduced water loss, improved operating efficiency, costs reflective of service and efficiently serve a greater population. In Afghanistan 4,800 new connections have helped reach 50,000 more people, while unit cost of water production has dropped by up to 55% in some cities and with cost recovery ratios of 89%.
ICMA – Afghanistan Water and Sanitation Project