National District Level Sector Support
With acceleration in toilet coverage over the last decade to around 39 per cent today, Nepal is on track to meet the Millennium Development Goal target of 55 per cent. However, this is below a desirable level of coverage, and the rate needs to improve to reach the government’s target of 100 per cent coverage by 2017.
The sector continues to be fragmented, with two separate government departments involved in large water and sanitation programmes, and external support agencies funding projects under a variety of different modalities. There is a move to develop a partnership between agencies under government-led national steering committees to improve sanitation and hygiene and address the arsenic problem. This experience will help build consensus on a sector-wide approach over the next three years.
Nepal is prone to emergencies such as flooding and earthquakes, and emergency stocks of water and sanitation supplies must be ready for use.
• Support the development of a Water Supply and Sanitation Management Information System (MIS) with disaggregated data, and ensure that district agencies have the knowledge and skills to maintain, update and use the system for evidence-based planning and allocation of resources.
• Support the establishment of District Water Users’ Federations that are registered and capable of contributing to the preparation of district development plans and influencing district allocation of financial resources.
• Increase the number of local NGOs and private sector agencies with the knowledge and skills to provide technical services to Water Users’ Committees, through selection and training of appropriate organisations.
• Undertake an analytical study to recommend changes in policy, legislation, organisational structure that would support a sector-wide approach (SWAp).
• Increase UNICEF’s capacity to respond to emergencies, as lead agency for water and sanitation, by revising the Emergency Preparedness and Response Plan (EPRP), drafting a stock management plan, and signing standby agreements with the government and local suppliers.
By 2010, there will be a sector-wide vision for key water, sanitation and hygiene issues among national sector line agencies, and district-level capacity and participation will be increased. This will be backed up by data collected in the Water Supply and Sanitation Management Information System, which will be used for planning and allocation of resources. Federations of Water Users’ Committees will be functioning at the district level and contributing to the preparation of district development plans. Local NGOs and private sector agencies will provide technical services to Water Users’ Committees.
Pre-positioned emergency water and sanitation stock will be in place. Emergency plans and coordination mechanisms will be developed, and memoranda of understanding signed with the government and local suppliers.