Paper No. 4
Presentation Time: 1:30 PM-5:30 PM
MAINTENANCE: A CHALLENGE TO SUPPLYING WATER IN THE DEVELOPING WORLD
One of the biggest challenges to supplying safe water in developing countries is maintenance, particularly in rural areas. Funds are available for installation of new systems from a variety of donors, including governments, NGOs, and religious groups. However, once the system is installed, usually with expertise from outside the local community, maintenance is turned over to locals who have little funding, expertise, or sense of ownership. Many wells and water delivery systems stand abandoned, long forgotten by those who installed them and long unused by those who need them. To improve the situation, maintenance must be supported at the individual, community, national, and international levels through education and empowerment, policy changes in funding and democratization, and increased international awareness. In addition, the politics that play havoc with human health must be reduced. Specific examples from Haiti will be given.