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Project update Tanzania

The MKAJI programme will provide WASH infrastructure, management skills and hygiene training to health centers in the Dodoma region. In this way health facilities can set an example of good practice in communities and offer a hygienic place with clean water and quality health expertise. Currently 100 health facilities have been selected and the first two batches of 10 WASH health facilities will be tendered before the beginning of 2015.

Kick-off Regional Advisory Board meeting

On October 10th 2014, the representatives of the local partner organisations gathered together for a first meeting with the Regional Advisory Board. District officers of health, water and planning, representatives of the Ministry of Finance and Simavi attended.

“The three local partner organisations presented an update of their work according to ‘Kigoda’, the traditional three legged chair,” says Michiel Verweij, senior programme officer at Simavi. “Each leg represents a crucial element of the programme: water and sanitation infrastructure, capability for WASH management and hygiene behaviour. Improved health depends on the joint implementation of these three legs.  If one leg is missing, the ‘Kigoda’  falls down.“

Critical success factors

During the meeting participants identified three critical success factors: ownership, coordination and capacity building. It is important to cultivate ownership at district and community level. “It requires extra effort in sharing information at different levels.  We should work more on participation and comprehensive agreements,” according to one of the participants. A second issue highlighted by the participants is coordination. Capacity was mentioned as a third success factor. Maintenance of infrastructure is crucial and it is important that everybody understands this.

The way forward

Taken into account these success factors, the MKAJI consortium partners agreed with the districts to have more regular coordination. They assigned the district medical officer as contact person for the district. Furthermore it was agreed to strengthen the commitment during the preparation process by a memorandum of understanding in which roles and contributions of stakeholders are established. This way sustainable improvement in the water and sanitation situation of the health facilities can be ensured. Capacity building was found to be the backbone of the programme. Therefore training and coaching activities will take place throughout the implementation.

The regional medical officer mentioned an example of capacity building: “If a small hole in the roof is left unattended, bats can enter and damage the health facility. The presence of bats is a risk for health people need to identify.”

In 2013 Simavi has been awarded a contract by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) to prepare an extensive project in the Dodoma region in Tanzania for drinking water supplies at primary health facilities. Simavi is the project manager of the MKAJI programme consortium including Witteveen+Bos and local partner organisations the Community-Based Health-Care Council (CBHCC), PATUTA and UFUNDIKO. CBHCC is experienced  in construction and training. Whereas Ufundiko is specialised in construction of WASH infrastructures and Patuta is specialised in health.

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