The Cambodia SOLAR WASH Pilot aims to address the issues of potable water for households in challenging environmental areas in Kampot province. Currently EMW is working in this area on sanitation from funding supported by the Gates Foundation. Thus, to
Cambodia has one of the lowest rates of access to improved water and sanitation in the Southeast Asia region and is heavily reliant on donor finance. In fact, access to rural clean water and sanitation is only at 58% and 20% respectively (WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Report, 2010). Among the difficulties in working in rural clean water and sanitation including reliable electricity and related increasing costs, there is the concern of households located in challenging environments where the cost of developing a water system is often cost-prohibitive. Consistent with the Ministry of Rural Development’s (MRD) comprehensive and ambitious strategy for 2010-2015 Rural Water Supply, Sanitation and Hygiene, many stakeholders in the WASH sector are looking for innovative solutions to not only increase water and sanitation access, but also focus on capacity building and strengthening institutional arrangements, particularly between public-private partnerships, with expected expansion of services to follow from 2015.
Location, , Cambodia
Primary Focus: Drinking Water - Households
Secondary Focus: Drinking Water - Schools
People Getting Safe Drinking Water: 500
School Children Getting Water: 250
People Getting Sanitation: 0
People Getting Other Benefits: 500
Application Type: Project Funding
Start Date: 2013-02-04
Completion Date: 2014-02-03
SOLAR WASHOBA Approach
In the spirit of piloting sustainable rural clean water access, the East Meets West Foundation (EMW), a US-based INGO with over 24 years of international development experience with operations in Cambodia since 2008 is partnering with the Kampot Province Department of Rural Development (Kampot PDRD) to spur potable clean water access for households located in challenging environments using solar powered household systems called the Cambodia SOLAR WASHOBA Pilot (Pilot) over a 12-month period to reach 2 schools and 100 households, approximately 1,000 people in total, in a challenging environment area of Kampot.
One of the key features of the Cambodia SOLAR WASHOBA Pilot is its use of US$160 reimbursement subsidy, about half the total cost of the Fcubed household system. This feature is built-in for a variety of reasons. First, the overall goal is to reach 100% commercialization for public consumption. Therefore, the subsidy in the Pilot is considered a rebate during a one-time, trial period to further testing and adaptability. Second, learning from the Pilot is critical for long-term success to ensure adequate capacity building and technical lessons learned in the field from the perspectives of implementer, beneficiary and government authority involvement. Last, given the current rural clean water situation in Kampot where a piped rural clean water system is cost-prohibitive and the target community lacks reliable electricity, the technology employed by the Pilot offers clean water benefits that can help stakeholders in the WASH sector learn the critical gaps to truly reach 100% water access.
1. Reach 100 households to provide potable drinking water in a challenging environment in Kampot, typically communities with low clean water coverage, no/unstable electricity, and hard/dirty water.
2. Reach 2 schools to provide potable drinking water in a challenging environment, preferably within the same community as targeted households.
3. Build awareness on hygiene behavior and increased local leadership capacity on clean water issues.
1. 100 households with installed FCubed unit.
2. 2 schools with installed FCubed unit.
3. Evaluation report that combines measured technical results, process evaluation on implementation and learning from the consumers, suppliers and involved implementation partners
EMW provides considerable experience in the rural clean water and sanitation sector with extensive expertise in output-based aid (OBA) approach to design, train and implement the Pilot that targets household beneficiaries. Accordingly, EMW’s role is to train Kampot PDRD in OBA methodology, design and implement monitoring tools and provide a thorough evaluation of the Pilot to be shared with other stakeholders in the WASH sector. At the same time, Kampot PDRD provides the WASH sector policy oversight, trainings to local authorities and leaders and strategic implementation coordination at the district and commune levels.
The Cambodia SOLAR WASHOBA Pilot adopts output-based aid methodology with a combination of four development techniques, largely derived from EMW’s experience in sanitation, to provide a holistic approach for households to not only procure solar powered household clean water systems, but also adopt communitywide hygiene behavior change:
1. Hygiene promotion and demand triggering. This step involves both information, education and communication campaigns to realize community demand for clean water. The Kampot PDRD also conducts a communitywide campaign through door-to-door engagement, community awareness meetings and trainings in the community vis-à-vis village chiefs and grassroots workers.
2. Hygiene and clean water marketing. This step involves identifying and building up supply networks in the local community. Training suppliers while furthering the network to include local stakeholders including local authorities, community leaders and volunteers to help connect clean water supplies with household demand. The Kampot PDRD will organize suppliers and provide technical assistance through MRD and possibly other INGOs including WaterShed Cambodia and IDE.
3. Access to finance. This step involves identifying sources of micro-credit loans in addition to other forms of credit including informal lending, credit from suppliers and/or builders and sometimes material donations/volunteer labor to help poor households. The Kampot PDRD will work with local microcredit institutions, NGOs with microcredit programs as well as informal lenders in the area.
4. Household Rebate. This step involves providing a partial smart subsidy of US$150 or about 50% rebate of the total cost of the solar powered household system only after results can be verified. Results are determined on physical inspection of the system facilities for both proper installation and usage.
EMW has been testing innovative solutions to ensure that its impact, particularly in the rural clean water sector, can match the growing challenges of the 21st century. To this end, EMW has explored a number of solar powered water systems including a household model designed by FCubed, an Australian-based company. The FCubed water treatment system consists of one or more solar panels which use heat from the sun to distill impure water from almost any water source by means of accelerated evaporation. The system receives impure water by either pressure or gravity feed systems that distribute the water evenly over the surface of the solar panel. Solar energy (radiant heat) heats the water creating a temperature differential from inside the panel to outside the panel which in turn vaporizes and then condenses the evaporated water on the inside of the composite solar film. Droplets of distilled water are collected at the bottom of the unit, separate from the source water.
To date, EMW has piloted over a few dozen units in the central provinces of Vietnam, Mekong Delta and Phnom Penh. The results thus far indicate that a solar powered water system can vaporize raw water containing arsenic, iron and calcium at a rate of 18 liters per day. Even though the final testing evaluation is not yet complete, the preliminary test results are positive and warrant serious consideration to develop a scale-up program pilot to continue to measure the system's durability and application into areas with challenging environments. But perhaps most importantly, the program pilot would demonstrate consumer demand and real insight into ways to develop a sustainable market for solar technology and rural clean water issues for solar technology and rural clean water.
Each physical household system is owned by the household and resides on their property.
The upshot of the approach is to not only reach households in challenging environments, but to consciously work with the government (i.e. Kampot PDRD) in transfer OBA methodology and long-term planning around water issues.
Maintenance Cost: $0
Indicator 1: Systems completed after installation
Indicator 2: Systems completed after 3 months of usage
Indicator 3: Water quality after installation
Indicator 4: Water quality after 3 months of usage