Profile ‘SMARTerWASH mobile monitoring of rural water and sanitation services in Ghana’

Who? The partners in this PPP are the IRC, lead partner (International Water and Sanitation Centre), the Dutch not-for-profit foundation Akvo, the Ghanaian Community Water & Sanitation Agency (CWSA) and the Ghanaian private sector partner Skyfox. The PPP has funding from the Dutch Sustainable Water Fund as well as the World Bank, Conrad N. Hilton Foundation and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

What? The aim of the PPP SMARTerWASH is to improve the rural service delivery of water and sanitation by implementing a national mobile monitoring system. For this purpose, a mobile monitoring tool called Akvo Flow is being used. For this monitoring software to function and exchange data with the various connected incumbent IT systems, these also needed to be updated and made interoperable. An important part of the programme is also capacity development of stakeholders at national, regional and pilot district levels. The role of the Ghanaian private company SkyFox is to set up an SMS alert system and strengthen customer relationships between community service providers, area mechanics and spare part distributors. The results/ outputs will, in the end, be translated to a regional level so that learning can be used in other African countries.

Where? The SMARTerWASH programme covers 119 districts in Ghana, which is nearly all of the districts.

When? The PPP started in January 2013 and will run until the end of 2016.

Why? In Ghana there has been continuous investment in new WASH facilities, without reference to the already existing ones and with little attention paid to their maintenance, service and functionality. The problem is that the monitoring of the service delivery system has not functioned which led to assumption of high service provision when the reality is that a very low number of the facilities are properly functioning. Effective monitoring that provides continuous, reliable data of the functionality and service levels of rural water and sanitation facilities is therefore an important element of ensuring sustainable delivery of water and sanitation to the communities.

Want to know more about what this PPP is about? Here you can read the interview with Jeroen van der Sommen (director & founder) of Akvo.