Author : Christine Chumbler
Type of publication : Article
Date of publication: 4, March 2021
Burkina Faso and Niger have some of the lowest rates of access to safe water and sanitation in the world.Water scarcity and water resource mismanagement in both countries undermine farming and livestock livelihoods, and sometimes create conflict.
People in these Sahel nations who face these shocks and stressors often suffer through one humanitarian crisis after another, and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has intensified these challenges.
This paper address TerresEauVie (TEV) activity, whose central focus is water security. TEV has three objectives: improved water security; productive land use; and im- proved management of shocks, risks, and stresses.
Building the Capacity of Local Government to Address Water Insecurity
TEV works mainly at the commune level, as well as government agencies at the village, regional, and national levels. TEV’s goal is to build local capacity for long-term management of water and land resources along with shock preparedness and response.
TEV will train commune officials and their staff to increase their management, collaboration, and planning skills.These enhanced skills are one puzzle piece in the overall systemic approach to help officials better manage and improve operations.
Making Data for Planning Available and Usable
In both Niger and Burkina Faso, communes are responsible for managing land, natural resources, and infrastructure development. These communes need to know the con- dition and location of all their health centers, water wells, roads, and cattle corridors.
Communes are particularly interested in using these data to develop local land use and natural resource and risk management plans that address water resources, whether for agricultural, industrial, or household use. Currently, local water agen- cies do not have this sort of management tool.
Coping with the Pandemic
COVID-19 plans provided by TEV serve as roadmaps for communes preparing for and implementing prevention and response. They also foster communal leadership in directing where development and government agencies should provide resources.
TEV has now begun supporting communes to trans- form their COVID-19 plans into communal multi-risk plans, encompassing a long- term perspective for addressing broader shock preparedness and response.
Goal Is Self-Reliance
The hope is to have a wider impact on water security in more than just the target communes in Burkina Faso and Niger. The idea at the end of the day is for self-reliance at the communal level.
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