Manganjo - A community embedded water company

2014 Finalist

The Manganjo Water Development Project aims to provide 15,000 people in the villages of Mabonji, Nganjo Nene and Nganjo Titi, situated in the Southwest Region of Cameroon, with a sustainable source of safe and affordable drinking water.

Project Description

This project will focus on building a community embedded water company. In order to build this institution, water committees will be trained and an association will be founded. Other activities include the development of policies and regulations, the organization of local contributions and the construction of a water system. LiveBuild will conduct a baseline study concerning sanitation and hygiene. Based on that study, an action plan will be set up and implemented.

Project goal and impact

The main goals of this project are to realize an access to potable water for 15,000 people and to reduce water-borne diseases by 60 percent.

Ecological

First of all, better access to potable water will reduce the traffic to and from the water source and better hygiene and sanitation will decrease pollution of the water sources and the surrounding area. Secondly, the protection of the water source and catchment area, in addition to the maintenance of the water system, is an important task of the community and, particularly, the caretakers. The preservation of local native vegetation, like the Boma trees, is therefore an integral part of the project to protect the surroundings of the source.

Economic

The community embedded water company will define a water fee for the management, operation and maintenance of the water system. The system is therefore designed to work independently from donors in the future. The prevention of water-borne diseases will furthermore decrease healthcare expenses and increase economic productivity. In addition, the reduction of time spent on fetching water will empower women to instead engage themselves more in income generating ventures.

Social

Traditionally, children (mostly girls) help their mothers collecting water, which precludes them from going to primary school. Providing easy accessible safe water will reduce the time spent to obtain drinking water for household use and therefore foster a more gender-equitable school attendance. The success of this project would be seen as a success for the entire community, thus building trust and confidence in future collaborations.

Participation of the communities

LiveBuild works together with three local partner organisations. The inclusion of the local community is secured by capacity building of the community members involved in the water project and institution building, including the definition of policies and regulations for the management and operation of the water system. The communities are supported to initiate and continue their own hygiene and sanitation program through participatory training and workshops.

Long term viability

In this project, LiveBuild combines a community-based approach with a social enterprise model to realize a sustainable and local solution: a community owned water enterprise. Important activities include the capacity building of community members involved in the water project and institution building, including defining policies and regulations involved in management and operation of the water system.

Information about the organization

LiveBuild is a Dutch organization founded in 2007. It facilitates communities in the Anglophone regions of Cameroon to improve life conditions by focusing on water and education. LiveBuild believes in the drive of young people to make a change. It successfully com-bines development projects with the involvement of a big group of volunteers.

Submitted by: 
LiveBuild
Region: 
Cameroon
Award year: 
2014

LiveBuild
Bemuurde Weerd WZ 3
3513 BH Utrecht
The Netherlands

Mr. Koen van Bremen, General Director
koen@livebuild.org