An alliance of Irish water sector companies has joined with humanitarian aid agency, GOAL, to help deliver sustainable WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) programmes to some of the world’s most vulnerable communities.
This new collaboration, called Water-Share Ireland is a unique partnership of key water sector companies aiming to leverage expertise, experience and funding to help sustainable implementation of Water and Sanitation programmes in developing countries. The initiative is led by the former Managing Director of Irish Water, Jerry Grant, working with sector company representatives.
There is strong support within the Irish water industry (public and private) to work with experienced humanitarian agencies, like GOAL, to deliver meaningful water services programmes where they are needed most. This partnership is a unique blend of profit and non-profit partnering to create real change in partnership with local communities.
A number of leading companies in the sector have come on board as Corporate Members of Water-Share Ireland including major consulting engineering organisations along with a number of leading contractors. More companies are expected to join in 2020.
GOAL delivers a range of Water and Sanitation programmes across ten countries, in both rural and urban settings. It works with communities and the private sector to deliver sustainable solutions that address public health, hygiene and nutrition issues. Last year alone, through water and sanitation programmes, more than 1.4 million people’s lives were positively changed. In Syria, one of the largest humanitarian crises in the world today, GOAL provided access to water for over 826,000 people. Similarly, in Ethiopia, water and sanitation programmes reached 242,000 people and in Sudan 115,000.
Speaking at the launch of Water-Share Ireland at a function in Dublin today (Thursday March 5th) Jerry Grant said the Water-Share Ireland/GOAL approach focuses on the sustainable development of WASH facilities for communities lacking these basic services.
“Our target areas have limited scope for modern technologies, power and maintenance skills. Even when GOAL can access funds for delivery of infrastructure, the success of the work relies on building capability at local level to operate and maintain facilities from which the very poorest can benefit. This is where we come in. GOAL staff on the ground can now call on technical assistance from Irish water engineers and technologists. This should enable GOAL to increase the scale and effectiveness of its programmes,” he said.
Water-Share Ireland/GOAL in action:
Sierra Leone: In Freetown, the capital of Sierra Leone, Water-Share Ireland is supporting GOAL in the development of a Faecal Sludge Treatment facility. Currently most of the faecal waste for Freetown’s 1.1 million people is dumped in a 43-acre landfill, causing a huge health risk.
Uganda: In Uganda, Water-Share Ireland plans to develop safe drinking water supplies in Namayingo District in the South East of the country, a rural region where access to clean water is as low as 10% in some villages. Water-Share has also commenced technical support to GOAL in Zimbabwe, to help deliver six new gravity water supplies.
For more information contact:
Miriam Donohoe, Senior Communications Manager, GOAL 087 2393914