Problem Addressed

The project is designed to respond to the combined risks of chronic malnutrition and poor access to water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) services for local production, thereby contributing to improved food security, child health and reproductive and sexual health outcomes.

RiPPLE also tries to address the issue of limited capacity for local (woreda) level organizations to make improvements in WASH in their communities. National WASH targets have been set out in the government’s growth and transformation plan, but success depends on the capacity of Woreda WASH Teams (WWT) and other actors at the woreda level.

Experience shows that capacity building has had the best results when there is local ownership. However, currently woreda level organizations hardly have any opportunity to influence programs that aim to build their capacity. This is an important reason for failure in delivering WASH coverage and sustaining results in the WASH sector. RiPPLE therefore seeks to improve local ownership of capacity building services.

Innovative Approach

RiPPLE’s approach to WASH is innovative because they combine their WASH capacity building and implementation projects with other related initiatives, such as promoting gardening and childhood nutrition, to ensure the overall well-being of a community. They also focus on promoting WASH in schools; this enables them to have a greater impact because children can share their knowledge with their families.

RiPPLE’s capacity-building project is unique in that it brings together diverse stakeholders, such as government officials, civil society organizations, and community members, to discuss WASH issues and create integrated and long-term solutions at the local, regional, and national levels.

Program Solution

RiPPLE aims to integrate WASH, Multiple Use Services (MUS) and Community Based Nutrition (CBN) in order to improve food security and reproductive and sexual health in the communities in which it works. First, the project works to improve productivity and income levels of community members through the demonstration of multiple use service (MUS) in 60 school gardens. They also strengthen the communication capacities of communities and partners for improved behavioral and social change focusing on MUS, food security, hygiene, nutrition and reproductive health through the development/adoption of 8 communication materials.

They promote stakeholder engagement in all activities through conducting local, regional, and national review meetings and the application of two effective participatory evaluations (mid-term and terminal) for knowledge creation and sharing. RiPPLE takes into account the Government’s Growth and Transformation Plan and works with government WASH committees on local and regional levels.

RiPPLE also aims to build the capacity of local committees trying to improve their WASH capacity. They have established Learning and Practice Alliances (LPAs) at the local level to help address these types of questions:

-How to improve demand-driven implementation

-How to improve the implementation process as a whole

-How to support committees and operators in understanding linkages between sustainability and equity in sanitation provision

-How to increase the benefits from service delivery in terms of improved health, increased incomes and livelihoods diversification and security

-What equipment, systems and capacities are needed at the local level to improve sustainable service delivery