Failed infrastructure investments in Africa over the past 20 years represents a lost investment of 1.2 billion dollars and millions still lack access to water. Amongst a plethora of other reasons for this failure, a primary one is the service providers’ insistence on mere infrastructure delivery. In simple terms, this means identifying a water-insecure community and installing a water access point, and thinking their job is done. The truth is that there is a need to rethink rural water supply models and shift completely towards a service delivery approach. Keep reading to learn what service delivery entails in the rural water space.
Our work begins when the taps open
We are service providers. Meaning, we don’t simply install hardware, pat ourselves on the back and move on. Rather, we enter a long-term commitment with the communities we serve putting the reliability of our service at the heart of our operations. Therefore, waterpoint uptime is a key performance indicator for Project Maji. We aim for 95% uptime at the 130+ solar-powered water kiosks we operate across Ghana, Kenya and now Uganda. Secondly, response time for local teams is 5 days from the day a technical complaint is filed.
We rely on remote monitoring to evaluate the performance of all Maji water points in real-time. This data is aggregated daily, and our qualified teams on the ground are notified if low water consumption persists at any given site. Local teams follow a robust Maintenance and Repair Framework to ensure maximum uptime at lowest possible costs. This includes a) Annual Service Visits for systematic servicing on a yearly basis b) Maintenance and Repair Visits upon request when a community indicates a technical issue and c) Courtesy Visit beyond regular maintenance schedule, to add new technical features or to discuss community patronage.
The result is high waterpoint functionality, a reliable service and truly sustainable access to safe water for remote rural villages:
Sharp Contrast: Rural Waterpoint Dysfunctionality
This data takes a whole new meaning when it is compared to the rural waterpoint dysfunctionality trend within the rural wate space. Approximately 184 million people in Sub-Saharan Africa depend on handpumps and 1 in 4 handpumps are non-functional at any given time. Naturally, the millions of families and individuals who rely on these waterpoints have no choice but to turn to dangerous open sources like ponds, swamps, puddles and muddy/dirty riverbeds. Hence, Project Maji’s focus on maintaining high waterpoint functionality.
By providing sustainable access to safe water, we are effectively pulling hundreds and thousands of families out of inescapable poverty, disease and suffering. If you or your organization, would like to be a part of the change then reach out to our Director Partnerships, Wieke De Vries, at firstname.lastname@example.org. Alternatively, write to us at email@example.com.
In the meantime, give as little as $20 and you will provide LIFETIME access to safe water for one person.