From access to clean water to economic empowerment
In the past ten years, Women for Water Partnership supported her member Tegemeo Women Group in Tanzania to gain access to clean water. Gravity flow schemes were built, training was given about water, hygiene and health, water users groups were established and the organisational capacity of the members was strengthened. Because of the fact that water is available, Tegemeo Women Group decided to take a challenging next step to establish economic ventures. Passage, a member of WfWP based in the Netherlands, decided to support Tegemeo after having met the women during a field visit. A three year programme, consisting of an investment and training programme, was designed with an annual budget of 15,000 euro.
The training programme was divided into three phases of 9 days each; phase one took place in September 2017, phase 2 in December 2017 and phase 3 in January 2018. Nearly all members, 27 out of 30, participated. People were trained in entrepreneurship, marketing, leadership, financial management, loans and repayment. They also discussed the impact of negative cultural elements and traditions about the role of women as well as ways how to cope with or mitigate these. In the second phase, the participants were trained in personal development techniques, presentation skills and ways to overcome negative thinking next to monitoring and evaluations techniques. Since the majority of participants practice traditional agriculture and livestock keeping, their knowledge was updated with new technology, such as irrigation techniques and tools, agricultural practices and food storage methods. In the third phase the focus was mainly on horticulture and livestock, such as cattle and goat management, chicken production and gardening techniques.
The facilitators applied different methods and techniques to increase understanding among the participants. The methods applied were lectures, discussions, group work and group presentations. Facilitators used practical examples to deepen the understanding of various topics. The applied techniques facilitated sharing of experience, raising confidence and concentration level. The participants enjoyed the training methodology because they got a chance to share their ideas and experiences. The training promoted entrepreneurship morale and knowledge. The participants gained entrepreneurship skills and the lessons were implemented in the businesses of the participants and their agricultural practices. Furthermore creativity and innovation has been improved among group members.
Saving and Invest
Tegemeo Women Group already had an own saving & credit system, called Vicoba. With the additional support of Passage members could invest in their own businesses. At the same time the group capital will grow with the interest rates of the loans. In this first year, twelve members received a loan through the Vicoba to start or invest in their businesses, in total 8,050 euro. Six members established shops, one invested in cultivating ginger, one invested in grain business, one in the cultivation of carrots, one in chicken farming and one in a bar. Since Tegemeo women live in Mweteni village, high in the mountains and lack proper roads and means of transport, one member used her loan to set up a commercial motorbike service.
The Community Development Officer monitored the businesses and observed that the skills acquired were put into practice and that the type of business fit the environment, providing daily human needs. The most important challenge remains the lack of proper transport to buy inputs and sell the products. Some retail owners sold products on credit and experienced defaulters, they agreed to change that system to avoid losses. It was observed that group members were computer illiterate, hence communication through email is a challenge. Also English language creates a communication barrier. Therefore it was recommended to include a budget for computer and internet training, especially for leaders as well as a course in English. These activities are included in the plan for the second year.
Read more about Tegemeo's projects in this evaluation report
SDG Target 6.1
Safe and affordable drinking water Achieving universal access to safe and affordable drinking water by 2030 presents a huge challenge for all countries, not just those with low incomes. The global population using at least a basic drinking water service increased from 81 per cent in 2000 to 89 per cent in 2015. However, only one in five countries below 95 per cent coverage is on track to achieve universal basic water services by 2030.
Achieving target 6.1 means addressing the “unfinished business” of extending services to 844 million people who still lack even a basic water service, and progressively improving the quality of services to 2.1 billion people who lack water accessible on premises, available when needed and free from contamination (safely managed drinking water).
It also implies going beyond households and providing access to services in schools, health-care facilities and other institutional settings. The commitment to “leave no one behind” will require increased attention on disadvantaged groups and efforts to monitor elimination of inequalities in drinking water services. Disaggregated data on basic services are available for a growing number of countries (80), by rural and urban area, wealth group and subnational region.
This enables governments to better identify and target disadvantaged groups, but further work is required to disaggregate estimates for safely managed services. In those countries where a large proportion of the population still lacks even a basic drinking water service, the initial focus must remain on ensuring that everyone has access to an improved drinking water source and reducing the time spent(primarily by women and girls) collecting water. Further work is also needed to establish a commonly agreed method for assessing affordability, as payment for services should not be a barrier to accessing services.