By: WASH R&E “Media” Network – The Liberia WASH Consortium (LWC) is a proud recipient of Euros 1.1 million funded Irish Aid One Year Project from November 2013 to October 2014.
The Liberia WASH Consortium Irish Aid funded Project seeks to ensure equitable and sustainable access to improved Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) services in underserved communities of Liberia.
Member Organizations of the Liberia WASH Consortium include Oxfam, WatewrAid, Concern Worldwide, Tearfund and ACF.
Five counties are about to benefit from the Grant: Grand Bassa, Grand Cape Mount, Montserrado, River Cess and Sinoe counties.
The Liberia WASH Consortium through its 5-Member International Organizations will implement the Project through their local partners: AEL, CODES, WASH Net, Youth and Disabled Network, and the WASH Reporters & Editors Network of Liberia.
The Liberia WASH Consortium (LWC) also supports the Liberian government’s WASH Strategic Sector Plan from 2013 to 2017 by contributing to a “Reduction in WASH-related diseases and improved quality of life for children under 5” and women.
Speaking at the official launch of the one Year Project known as the “IRISH AID MEDIA LAUNCH PROGRAM” held at the Ministry of Health & Social Welfare Conference Room on Monday, November 18, 2013, the Consortium Technical Advisor, Cathy Stephen expressed optimism that the Program will be implemented through the collective participation of the beneficiaries.
She mentioned that WaterAid and GWEI will implement the Water & Sanitation Project in Grand Cape Mount County, while ACF and GWEI will control the Program in rural Montserrado County, with the Grand Bassa County Program to be implemented by Concern Worldwide.
She further disclosed that Oxfam and AEL will control River Cess County, while Tearfund and AEL will focus on Sinoe County.
Madam Stephen mentioned that the Project is expected to target 66 underserved communities, 18 schools and five clinics.
She hailed Irish Aid for providing the money for the smooth implementation of the water and sanitation Project in the five counties.
According to her, the Project will increase knowledge and understanding of good sanitation and hygiene practices in the five counties. She also said the participation of the local inhabitants in the five counties is the first priority to ensure that the yearlong Program is fully implemented.
Madam Stephen expressed the belief that after the Program, functioning and sustainable water facilities will be provided for the provision of safe drinking water.
She stressed that capacity building of stakeholders in key institutions in the five counties play a pivotal role at national level for the proper planning, delivering, and monitoring for sustainable WASH activities.
Madam Stephen further mentioned that the WASH training of community health volunteers is essential for citizens to experience the impact of the Project.
She further disclosed that 53 water facilities will be rehabilitated and the testing of water for quality at all times.
The WASH Consortium Executive also mentioned that mechanics will be trained to repair hand pumps and wells when they are broken down.
She named other activities as local WASH Consultative Meeting, National WASH Celebrations, Budget Tracking & Monitoring, County Level Advocacy, WASH Hour Radio Show and the Meeting of Lawmakers at Forums.
For her part, Irish Aid Programme Advisor, Carine Gachen said Ireland is honored to partner with the Liberia WASH Consortium and the Liberian government in its quest to reduce WASH-related diseases and contribute to improve quality of life for women and children under five in Liberia.
According to her, since 2005, with more than 62 million Euros, Irish Aid funded various programs in health, security, in fighting Gender Based Violence and WASH.
Madam Gachen further noted that since 2007, Irish Aid funds supported the Liberia WASH Consortium both for Policy Activities and Service Delivery with 2.4 million United States dollars, and that the new Project, Irish Aid is just adding almost 1.5 million United States dollars.
She pointed out that the Liberia WASH Consortium (LWC) has played and continues to play a central role in the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) sector.
Madam Gachen used the occasion to reaffirm Ireland’s commitment to the Government and people of Liberia in promoting access to quality WASH services to Liberians and foreign residents.
She also used the occasion to command the Liberia WASH Consortium for the high level of contributions to the Liberia WASH sector, especially through quality and inclusion and community participation.
For his part, Assistant Health Minister for Preventive Health Services, Tolbert Nyenswah performing the Official Launch of the Irish Aid Project, hailed Irish Aid for the funding.
According to him, Government has put into place essential programs to improve water and sanitation services in all parts of the country.
He however appealed to the Liberia WASH Consortium and other partners to lobby for sufficient funding to implement WASH Projects in all parts of Liberia.
Assistant Minister Nyenswah pointed out that the WASH sector is gradually improving, but he wants more support for urgent growth.
The Irish Aid Media Launch concluded with a major News Conference which addressed all of the other issues concerning the implementation of the Project.
The Conference was addressed by all the Heads of Member Organizations of the Liberia WASH Consortium, “Oxfam, WatewrAid, Concern Worldwide, Tearfund and ACF”.
They promised to ensure the full implementation of the Irish Aid Project in collaboration with their respective local partners for equitable and sustainable access to improved WASH services, especially in underserved communities across Liberia.