This project commenced on August 2007 and was completed in late 2008. There will be follow up support provided to the community for 2 years
This project comprised of an integrated program of water, sanitation and hygiene promotion to 18 households in Lisaico village and 32 households in Raime village in the Maubara sub district, Timor-Leste.
Access to Water in Lisaico:
All 18 of these homes were provided with potable water supply by way of three community water points constructed at three convenient locations in the village. These taps immediately reduced the walking time and distance endured by the residents Lisaico collecting water.
Each of the three water points have a reserve tank to collect and store water for the ongoing convenience of the households they serve.
The water supply system also features an intake structure to divert water to the system and about 1500 meters of pipeline which routes the water source into the centre of the community being served.
Access to Water in Raime
The previous system was unreliable and failed to meet the water needs of the Raime residents. WaterAid has repaired the existing system and extended it so that it reaches several new households. The new system has immediately reduced the walking time and distance endured by the residents Raime collecting water.
Raime now has two separate systems servicing all 32 households with potable water supply. The technical components of these systems are:
- 14 community water points constructed at various convenient locations in the village.
- 5200 meters of pipeline to bring water from the water source to the heart of the village
- four reserve tanks to collect and store water for the ongoing convenience of the households they serve.
Prior to the implementation of WaterAid's project, the residents of Lisaico and Raime, like most rural communities in Timor-Leste, would defecate in the open in the bushes near to their home. Diarrhoea is the most prevalent and problematic disease in rural Timor-Leste and can be easily prevented through effective sanitation and improved hygiene practices.
All 50 households in both villages now have basic but highly effective latrines for their private use. All residents now enjoy a safe, private and convenient place to go.
Residents of the villages are also being shown safe hygiene practices, a crucial element in WaterAid's work providing effective and sustainable sanitation. The most important and life-saving hygiene practice is hand washing at critical times (after defecation, before eating etc). It is a fact that hand washing at critical times alone reduces incidence of diarrheal diseases by 40%.
As a result of WaterAid's water and sanitation project implementation, 100% of the village populations now benefit from:
- Access to potable water within 50M of their home, significantly reducing their time spent collect water.
- A 2% open defecation rate for Lisaico and drastically reduced 10% for Raime
Role of partner:
The input of our local partner was instrumental in the successful implementation of this project. Local partner staff are a vital asset, with their inherent understanding of the local context, language and culture. This along with their technical skill has contributed for the success of this project. Local partners often lack high-level, in-depth technical, community mobilization and hygiene promotion skills and WaterAid mentors the partners throughout the project implementation to build these up.
Lisaico has been one of the most successful communities of the five with whom WaterAid has been working throughout 2007. This is in part due to the high demand for good water and sanitation facilities in the area and the subsequent active interest from residents in seeing these developed.
It was pleasing to see such enthusiasm for the project, with the residents of both villages raising funds of their own to put towards the maintenance of the system.
One of the successes of this project was the increase in community empowerment levels after they took the initiative in constructing their own water and sanitation facilities. We have observed many in Lisaico and Raime showing an increased level of confidence within themselves, when undertaking other development activities in their village.
Subsequently, the residents of both Lisaico and Raime have initiated a "kitchen garden" program, using the wastewater from the tap overflow, as well as the construction of a school building in their village.
As if often the case with water and sanitation programs, this work has opened the gateway to the development of the villages.
As with all development work, there have been some challenges associated with this project, including:
- Sustainability of hygiene behaviour change: Community members tend to easily go back to their previous unsafe hygiene behaviour. WaterAid will continue to work with the residents of Raime to ensure these behaviours are being practiced.
- Availability of spare parts: spare parts are not available in the district town. This will add slight impediment to prompt repairs of the systems.
- Diminishing water source in Lisaico: As a result of deforestation, the water source which feeds the water system is decreasing.
In order to maintain momentum and enthusiasm for the project (and subsequent utilisation), WaterAid Australia provides follow up visits and "hands on" support for two years. During this period, the communities get support in their collection of maintenance funding, technical input if they are encountering any problems and information and leads as to where can they cans source spare parts. The community also has enthusiasm towards the development with a strong leadership and active PMC to take these facilities into the future.
CASE STUDY: Nathalia's Story
Nathalia is 19 years old and lives with her parents and her brother and sister in Raime, a village 24km west of Liquica Town. Raime is located a very long way from all nearby schools and Nathalia, like many young women in Timor-Leste has never received a proper education, as she has had to stay at home to help her family with duties such as collecting water and cooking.
19 year old Nathalia at the new tapstand outside her house which enormously reduces the amount of time she spends collecting water each day.
Every day Nathalia helps her mother to collect water for her whole family. The nearest water source is an unprotected spring, located about 100 meters away from her home. Compared to many people in rural Timor-Leste, this distance is relatively short, however it still takes Nathalia 15 minutes to collect just two 5-litre containers of filthy water. Her family uses around 80 liters a day for cooking, cleaning, and drinking – which means Nathalia and her mother spend 2 hours a day carrying backbreaking loads of water.
The water source is unprotected and often becomes contaminated. Nathalia and her family have lost count of how many times they have fallen ill with diseases like diarrhea, intestinal worms and chronic skin disease as a result of this poor water quality.
This Footprints funded project allowed WaterAid to install a water system providing a steady flow of clean water to 14 taps throughout the village.
"We are so happy now a new water system has been built... WaterAid put a tap just 2 meters from our house. It will save us a lot of time! I will have time to clean the house and to help my mother in the garden growing food to sell at the market".
Nathalia's family doesn't have a hygienic toilet of any kind and instead resort to open defecation – which is common in Timor-Leste, a country with less than 40% sanitation coverage. Nathalia says,
"I know that is not good for us but I have no choice! I know that if we use a toilet we'll stop flies bringing the diseases over from the bush where we go".
Since WaterAid helped Nathalia's family with the construction of a basic but highly effective concrete slab latrine, Nathalia no longer needs to endure the filth and indignity of defecting in a public, open site.
(Report posted 9 January, 2009)
This project will provide water, sanitation and hygiene education for 2 villages in Liquica district of Timor-Leste. These two villages are part of WaterAid's program in Timor-Leste and are made up of 67 households which is approximately 469 people.
The project cost will cover:
- Materials for the appropriate water systems such as gravity feed systems, tap stands etc
- Capacity building and training of Grupo Maneija Facilidad Be Mos No Saneamento (Water Management Committees) and local partners
- Hygiene education activities
- WaterAid staff supervision and mentoring costs
Country Program Goal:
- To improve the health and quality of life of women, men and children living in Timor-Leste through the provision of safe and adequate water supply, appropriate sanitation and hygiene education.
- Provide safe water through appropriate technology/systems such as gravity feed systems. Each village will have access to safe water from community water points located in each village.
- Provide access to adequate sanitation for households. Each household will be part of hygiene education awareness activities which will raise awareness of the importance of effective sanitation. Each household, with support from WaterAid will be offered the opportunity to build their own hygienic latrine.
- Provide participatory health and hygiene workshops for children and adult communities members
WaterAid Australia enables the world’s poorest people to gain access to safe water, sanitation and hygiene education. These basic human rights underpin health, education and livelihoods and form the first, essential step in overcoming poverty.
WaterAid Australia selected Timor-Leste to establish its first country program as the need there is the highest in our region. The latest water and sanitation figures from WHO/Unicef Joint Monitoring Program show that only 58% of people have access to safe water and only 36% have access to sanitation. Poverty levels in Timor-Leste are stark, with more than two in five people live on less than 55 cents per day.
The Millennium Development Goals (MDG) were set by the world’s leaders at the UN Millennium summit in 2000. The targets are interconnected by nature but the water and sanitation targets would catalyse the attainment of all eight MDGs. Access to safe water and sanitation are the keys to unlocking economic growth and productivity and improve health and access to education.
Liquica district is one of Timor-Leste’s 13 districts and is west of Dili stretching from the coast up to steep mountainous areas. The majority of the people in Liquica live in the elevated, steep mountainous region of the district and are subsistence farmers. The main crop in the region is maize.
Project partners / community involvement
WaterAid Australia works with local partners, who understand local issues, and provide them with the skills and support to help communities set up and manage practical and sustainable projects that meet their real needs.
WaterAid has already established links with the local and national government and the wider WaterAid Country Program includes working with the local government as they are responsible for the provision of safe water and sanitation for their citizens.
In Liquica Grupo Maneija Facilidad Be Mos No Saneamento (Water Management Committees) will be established in each village. Each committee will take part in training and capacity building, there will also be training in basic construction and maintenance of tap stands, joint pipe fitting, pipe laying and reservoir tank maintenance. Communities contribute also to the program through locally available material, their time and expertise.
Safe water and sanitation should be accessible, affordable to all, including the most marginalised people in any community. The needs of disadvantaged and excluded groups such as women, disabled people, people living with HIV and AIDS, older people and children are a priority for WaterAid. We ensure that the voices of marginalised people are heard and that all parts of the community are actively involved in planning, building and managing programs which is critical to their long-term success.
Part of a larger project:
This funding from the Footprints Network contributes to WaterAid Australia’s larger project in Liquica in 2007 which encompasses 5 villages, providing an estimated total number of 1743 people with safe water, access to sanitation and with hygiene education.