plan 211Water System, Latrines, Fuel-Efficient Stoves, and Health/Hygiene Education: Payacuca, Nicaragua

Summary

[Funding secured for water, need only for funds for the latrine] Install electric powered pump gravity distribution system; reforest watershed; train in hygiene practices and sustainable environmental practices; install 143 latrines; construct 15 fuel eff

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Background

This project will benefit the community of Payacuca, located in the Terrabona Muncipality of the department of Matagalpa. This community is too small and remote to receive assistance from other organizations.

Payacuca is a Spanish-speaking Mestizo community that lives in extreme poverty surviving on less than $50 a month. They depend on subsistence agriculture and livestock activities for their livelihood, or work as day laborers in neighboring regions. Although they have a primary school, it is quite rudimentary without running water or bathrooms. Aside from the primary school, this community is highly disenfranchised and lacks access to all basic services (drinking water, sanitation, phones, hospitals, etc) except for electricity.

The current water sources for the community are artisanal water holes along the side of the river. These water holes are highly polluted as they are used for watering livestock, bathing, and washing clothes. As a result the water is not fit for human consumption. Currently, families must travel from 100 meters up to 1 kilometer to bring water to their houses.

The community also lacks adequate sanitation, as latrines are either non-existent or are in such a deteriorated condition so as to be unusable.

Location

Terrabona, Matagalpa, Nicaragua

Attachments

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Focus

Primary Focus: Drinking Water - Households
Secondary Focus: Sanitation - Households

People Getting Safe Drinking Water: 1,160

360 families
450 women
369 men
163 boys
178 girls

School Children Getting Water:

People Getting Sanitation: 481

143 families
199 women
145 men
62 boys
75 girls

People Getting Other Benefits: 1,160

Health and Hygiene Education is a component of all of our projects, so all beneficiaries will receive this training.

15 families involved in reforestation efforts will also construct a fuel-efficient stove that uses 60% less wood than a typical stove.

Application Type: Program Funding

Start Date: 2011-05-01

Completion Date: 2012-04-30

Technology Used:

Project preparation (Done by community)
-Identify and commit local resources (animals to transport materials, construction materials, labor etc.)
-Community assume responsibility for ongoing repair and maintenance of facilities
-Conduct survey of existing water and sanitation facilities and needs assessment
-Identify volunteers for community sanitation committee, define roles and responsibilities
-Prepare written proposal (needs assessment, identification of site location, budget and cost estimates)
-Create community labor schedule for project

Construction of water & Sanitation infrastructure- Community learns how to build and maintain drinking water and sanitation infrastructure
-Purchase and transport construction materials to community by truck and animals
-Provide training and technical assistance to community in construction, maintenance and repair of electric pumping water systems and latrines (upkeep and repair of pumps, proper cleaning of latrines and tanks, water testing and treatment, etc.)
-Build latrines (hand dig pits to depth of up to 9 feet, line with rocks, bricks or stones, install precast concrete slab and box seat, create walls and roof from zinc panels)
-Install an electric pumping water system. This consists of a pump that will pump to a distribution tank that will in turn distribute water via gravity flow to the families.

El Porvenir has nearly 20 years of experience helping rural Nicaraguan communities build appropriate technology (wells, latrines, community washing stations, and fuel efficient stoves) as well as providing communities with the tools they need to manage their water, sanitation and forestry resources. The methodology of El Porvenir is based on three key principles: (a) community empowerment through active participation and ownership in all aspects of the project, (b) creation of sustainable organizations in the community to manage resources in the long term, and (c) focus on appropriate technology made from low-cost locally available materials that can be maintained by the community.

Phases:

Latrines will be built first, then the water system (both accompanied by hygiene education), and then reforestation along with the construction of fuel-efficient stoves.

Community Organization:

Usually the communities are organized even before applying to El Porvenir for a project; El Porvenir does not undertake any project unless we receive a handwritten request from the community. If the community does not have Potable Water Committee (CAP) then other existing structures (if any) in the community are viewed to see they want to become the CAP for their community, otherwise a new committee is created. The community is trained in community organizing technique and committee functioning.

Community ownership is felt by the community through its identification of its problem, and their involvement in the sweat equity of the project.

All water project areas are legalized before beginning any construction. Latrines are built on the property of each family, so each family owns their own latrine through their labor of building it.

Government Interaction:

This project is not connected to government programs.

Ancillary activities:

Health and Hygiene Education: Community learns how to reduce water and sanitation related illnesses through good hygiene practices.
-Identify and train local hygiene and health promoters from the community to reinforce hygiene trainings on an ongoing basis
-Carry out household visits and community workshops to help the community to identify risky behaviors and learn good hygiene practices. Topics covered include: Definition of hygiene, 10 rules for using latrines, Why sanitation is important, Water and sanitation related diseases, The cycle of contamination, Why hand-washing is important, How to maintain and dispose of garbage, How to use and maintain wells and community washing stations, How to treat and use water, Sources of water contamination, Role and responsibilities of Community Water and Sanitation Committee members, Con
-Create and air health and hygiene announcements on local radio stations to reinforce community health learning and to reach a larger audience.
-Organize community clean up days to reinforce training about environmental sanitation and waste management
-Collect data from local clinics and health centers on incidence of water and sanitation related diseases (diarrhea, skin infections etc.)

Reforestation- Community learns how to increase infiltration and aquifer recharge and to prevent landslides and soil erosion through reforestation and conservation.
-Through field visits, talks and classroom activities adults and children from the village learn about the relationship between trees and water, the importance of the microwatershed to the sustainability of the village well.
-Provide each family with a set of 5 grafted fruit trees to plant in their yards, which will generate fruit within 2 years, as an incentive to preserve trees
-Provide materials and training to the families for the construction of fuel efficient cookstoves that use 60% less firewood than traditional open air woodburning stoves.
-Identify land to be donated for conservation and reforesting
-Map out conservation area (with support of EP reforestation worker) so that community is aware of the boundaries
-Set up community seedling nursery and later transplant seedlings to conservation area
-Fence off and legalize conservation area in the name of the community if possible

Other Issues:

IMPACT:
-access to clean drinking water and sanitation
-reduction in time spent and distance traveled carrying water
-reduction in incidence of water and sanitation related diseases (skin infections, parasites, bacterial infections, diarrhea etc.)
-reduction in firewood used for cooking fuel
-water table protected through sustainable management of watershed/conservation area

In order to measure the impact of our projects, we collect data several times a year from clinics serving rural districts where we have a high concentration of projects: number of visits due to diarrhea, etc. As the number decreases we feel that hygiene education has been effective.

Maintenance Revenue:

The community has agreed that each member will pay a quota each month for the water systems maintenance (20 córdobas, approximately $1). This amount will go to the maintenance fund which will be maintained by the treasurer of the potable water committee and will be put into a bank account if it reaches 1,500 córdobas (U$82). El Porvenir will assist the community in opening a bank account if necessary. Each family is responsible for the maintenance of the their latrines.

The ongoing cost to El Porvenir is providing hygiene education.

Maintenance Cost: $100

Metrics:

Prior art before metrics

Cost: $141,221

Budget revised in July 2010 to reflect that we now have 100% funding for the water system and asks for double pit latrine funding for just phase II of the latrines (35).

Co Funding Amount: $123,797

Co-funders include Episcopal Relief and Development, Ann Campana Judge Foundation, Atkinson Foundation, and Niles Foundation.

Community Contribution Amount: $23,279

We estimate that the project will require 7,819 person days of labor, which will be provided by the beneficiary communities on a volunteer basis.

Fund Requested: $17,424

Implementing Organization:

Attachments

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  • 1 participant | show more

    Review process

    Rajesh Shah of Peer Water Exchange

    The fate of this application is somewhat tied El Porvenir's other application. Rather than making reviewers review 2 similar applications, we are reviewing only one. We realize that one is solar powered and this one is not. The cost/beneficiary is much better in this one so depending on those f...

    The fate of this application is somewhat tied El Porvenir's other application.

    Rather than making reviewers review 2 similar applications, we are reviewing only one.

    We realize that one is solar powered and this one is not. The cost/beneficiary is much better in this one so depending on those factors it is possible that this one may receive a better fate than the other one.

  • 1 participant | show more

    Initial assessment of proposed project by Rick McGowan

    Rick McGowan of Team Blue

    Payacuca Nicaragua - Porvenir Project In general – the proposal is reasonable in its description, but there are many missing issues that need to be addressed before any financing should be committed. See below (issues are not in any particular order of importance): Water Quality - Other than a brief description of the current source, th...

    Payacuca Nicaragua - Porvenir Project

    In general – the proposal is reasonable in its description, but there are many missing issues that need to be addressed before any financing should be committed. See below (issues are not in any particular order of importance):

    Water Quality - Other than a brief description of the current source, there appears to be no reference to water quality testing before or after construction. Who will do this and who will pay for it?

    Electricity Power – from where? Reliability? Who pays and how much? Who repairs (communities?)? Who trains operators, buys or provides spare parts and materials, electricity? Is there a relatively nearby source of materials and equipment for maintenance, repair, and expansion?

    Cost, Funding Sources, and Contributions– who pays for goods, materials, labor, training, etc. for system construction? It appears that community labor will be provided, but by who, and how much per family, and what tasks do they carry out? Digging trenches, hauling sand and pipes, etc. They should specify exactly what group(s) finance what aspects of the project.

    Technical Operations Staff and Training- Who trains and pays the trained technical people who will design, operate and maintain the system? Who provides engineering design, operational training, construction management, O&M follow-up?

    Gravity Flow Water Distribution – This apparently means a single main storage / collection tank with a gravity flow uphill source, or downhill source (groundwater, spring water, etc.) pumped up to villages with multiple tanks for gravity distribution? They need a better description of the system and who will design it, built it, maintain, get spare parts, etc.

    What kind of latrines? Who builds? Who pays? who de-sludges? 9 feet deep? That's a lot of shit. How do they de-sludge from that depth? Or do they just build new ones?

    Why the fuel efficient stoves? What kind, how much, who designs, etc.

    Why 1160 getting water and only 481 getting latrines? Financial, technical or promotion insufficiencies? They say that all beneficiaries receive training, so why not more latrines? Cash constraints? Unwillingness to pay, etc.?

    Where do the stove designs come from? Are they ground-tested? Who builds?

    If community is too provide ongoing repair and maintenance, who will train them to do this?

    Where do they get spare parts and the money to buy the spare parts?

    Why do they say that the community is too small for support from other organizations? For example, if 1160 people get access to improved water (check later to see if it is treated, distributed, pressurized, etc.

    Is the $50/month per family or person? It didn't appear to say. Probably per family.

    How do they collect funds for repairs, maintenance, expansion, water treatment, etc.?

    Who does the reforestation activities? Who trains and pays these people?

    In general, this seems to be a fairly reasonable proposal, but it is lacking in detail with regard to responsibilities, financing, planning, and O&M.

    By the way, I could not open the budget file because it was apparently mis-named as “xls.doc file. You should rename and re-post it to a common MS Word format.

  • 1 participant | show more

    Lynn Roberts of Agua Para La Salud (APLS)

    I have read the very detailed 71 page project description (in Spanish) of the Trinidad project proposal and find most of the questions above answered in that proposal to my satisfaction. If the proposal for this project is as detailed it should minimize some of the concern about the project. Is the Payacuca proposal available?

    I have read the very detailed 71 page project description (in Spanish) of the Trinidad project proposal and find most of the questions above answered in that proposal to my satisfaction. If the proposal for this project is as detailed it should minimize some of the concern about the project. Is the Payacuca proposal available?

  • 3 participants | show more

    Lynn Roberts of Agua Para La Salud (APLS)

    Do you have a water system design and materials list for this project you could post on the application?

    Do you have a water system design and materials list for this project you could post on the application?

    • Rajesh Shah of Blue Planet Network

      Can you briefly note down some differences between the 2 projects? - regarding the electricity source? - you mention pumps? do you need more than one? - have you designed the storage capacity and pump hp? Am inviting Lynn of APS and Rick of Team Blue. No compulsion to review, but they are interested and experienced in this area. ...

      Can you briefly note down some differences between the 2 projects?

      - regarding the electricity source?
      - you mention pumps? do you need more than one?
      - have you designed the storage capacity and pump hp?

      Am inviting Lynn of APS and Rick of Team Blue. No compulsion to review, but they are interested and experienced in this area.

      East Meets West have done nearly a hundred projects like this and maybe Rick can be of help, having been close to many of them.

    • Rob Bell of El Porvenir

      Lynn, Added a couple of design docs I found. Pretty busy this week, will look for more and answer some more questions tomorrow. Rob

      Lynn,

      Added a couple of design docs I found. Pretty busy this week, will look for more and answer some more questions tomorrow.
      Rob

  • Rating: 8

    review by (only shown to members)

    I am basing my rating on the Trinidad review since I was advised we were only reviewing that project for both projects. I rate this project higher because of the track record of El Porvenir with gravity water systems. Design details were not available, but I have seen details of other gravity systems by El Porvenir.

  • Rating: 4

    review by (only shown to members)

    This is a better project (to me) than the solar powered one, mainly due to the cost/person ratio.

    APLS's comments after having read the Spanish document makes me feel reassured, but i still have many reservations about El Porvenir's strategy in finding the right sanitation model.

    While BPR is unable to fund this at this point in time, i hope other funders see the application, the peer review, and adopt it.

  • Rating: 8

    review by (only shown to members)

    This response is a bit redundant as it was written in a hurry.

    This review is very similar to the Payacuca Review, mostly because the proposed systems are quite similar in many respects.

    From their proposal: "El Porvenir has nearly 20 years of experience helping rural Nicaraguan communities build appropriate technology (wells, latrines, community washing stations, and fuel efficient stoves) as well as providing communities with the tools they need to manage their water, sanitation and forestry resources." So they are presumably well qualified to carry out the proposed project.

    This proposal was reasonably well thought out, like their Trinidad proposal. However, I was not able in either proposal to review their proposed cost break down because the file format uploaded was non-standard (xls.doc.) Nonetheless, their considerable experience in water supply and sanitation would presumably lead to reasonable budgets.

    Shortcomings (in all the proposals reviewed) include a lack of addressing important issues such as water quality (none of the proposals addressed this) and financial sustainability. WQ treatment does not have to be high tech. There are many low-tech (e.g., system-level slow sand filters, household level treatment) and other types of treatment for improving WQ. All of the proposals should have addressed WQ issues, either at the system or household level. None of the proposals addressed potential rural electrification (where appropriate) problems (outages) either, nor what their response would be.

    It would be worthwhile to calculate an estimated per capita cost of providing clean (although there was no apparent mention of water quality or treatment) in comparison with other types of systems (diesel, grid electric, etc., although those systems would likely present obstacles because of the apparent isolation of the proposed project site, and consequently higher transportation and other logistics costs.

    It seemed a bit odd to include the fuel efficient cookstoves in what is otherwise a water and sanitation project, and especially including only ten of them. Why not for everybody? And NOBODY should get anything for free. I was disappointed that there seemed to be a relative lack of user input (labor and materials, and cash contributions) in most of the proposals.

    Nobody went into any detail about relative advantages of different types of latrines, and the potential environmental impacts of poorly designed or built latrines.

    Why the fuel efficient stoves? That seems a long way from water and sanitation.

    The program should mandate the building of latrines in any community that will benefit from water supply.

    Nobody should get free services. If nobody pays for the services, it is unlikely that the services will be sustained. Then the facilities financed under this project will have been underutilized.

    Few of the competing proposals addressed financial or sustainability issues. The selected proposals should be required to provide a sustainability plan, before any grants are given.