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European Union and UNICEF join forces to boost access to water and sanitation in Mozambique

Maputo, 4 August 2006 – Tens of thousands of children and their families in central Mozambique will benefit from clean water and sanitation in a joint collaboration between the European Union (EU), Government of Mozambique and UNICEF.

The new investment of 5,570,000 euros in the context of the EU-ACP Water Facility Programme will help increase access to safe and affordable water and sanitation facilities in four districts (Buzi, Nhamatanda, Nicoadala and Milange) and four cities (Beira, Dondo, Quelimane and Mocuba) in the provinces of Sofala and Zambezia.

The four-year programme will focus on those rural and peri-urban areas with low water and sanitation coverage that have been hardest hit by HIV/AIDS and are particularly vulnerable to cholera outbreaks.

The participation of district-level authorities and communities is central to the initiative. The aim is to ensure a participatory and sustainable community approach with a strong focus on district-level planning, implementation and monitoring. The programme will provide:

  • 150,000 people with access to safe and sustainable water points;
  • 25,000 families (125,000 people) with access to safe sanitation facilities (HH latrines);
  • 120 schools and 45,000 schoolchildren with safe access to sanitation and hygiene facilities (latrines, hand washing, urinals).

The funds will be used to support capacity building activities within the National Water Directorate (DNA) and National Directorate of Public Works (DNOP) at the national, provincial, district and municipal levels with regard to the planning, management and evaluation of sustainable water and sanitation activities. An important component of the programme is the training of hundreds of sanitation, health and education workers at the provincial and district level as well as the training of mechanics in the maintenance of hand pumps and community activists and teachers in the promotion of good hygiene practices. The programme also supports the creation of sanitation clubs in schools and awareness programmes on hygiene promotion in the classroom.

In addition, funds will be allocated to the construction and rehabilitation of 220 water points, such as wells, boreholes or rain harvesting systems as well as sanitation and hygiene facilities in communities and schools in the regions with the lowest coverage. The project also supports the construction of 25,000 household latrines and 240 child-friendly hygiene and sanitation facilities in primary schools.

While considerable progress has been made over the past years to bring water supply and sanitation to Mozambicans, only around 40 per cent of the population has access to safe water, with a slightly smaller proportion in urban areas (36 per cent) than rural areas (41 per cent). The DNA also estimates that only 33 per cent of the population has access to adequate sanitation, with no difference between urban and rural areas. The provinces of Zambezia and Sofala have some of the lowest water and sanitation coverage in the country and the highest HIV prevalence rates.

For more information, please contact:

Luis Hebrero, European Union, Delegation of the European Commission in Mozambique; Telephone: (+258) 21 481 000;

Thierry Delvigne-Jean, UNICEF Mozambique; Telephone: (+258) 21 481 121;



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