KIWASH will combine nutrition programming with improved access to water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH). KIWASH aims to enable more than one million Kenyans across nine counties to gain access to improved WASH services and increase access to irrigation and nutrition services.
As county governments take on responsibility for investment in and oversight of service delivery to keep their constituents healthy—and their economies thriving— great opportunities arise to expand service delivery through public-private partnerships bringing new actors into the WASH sector. KIWASH will partner with water and sanitation providers to develop bankable business plans, improve operations, and facilitate access to financing. In parallel, behavior-change communications linked to Community-Led Total Sanitation and hygiene will stimulate demand for improved household sanitation, hygiene, and nutrition.
To improve water services, KIWASH will assist water service providers (WSPs) in expanding household connections and extending their networks to unserved communities. In rural areas, we will work with counties, WSPs, and private entrepreneurs to expand and improve operations and management of existing community drinking water systems. We will also work with Water Resource Users Association to improve catchment area protection and water access, and improve sanitation and multi-use services that reinforce KIWASH interventions in nutrition. To improve access to sanitation services and reduce open defecation, we will work with counties that make strong commitments to apply the community-led total sanitation (CLTS) approach and engage with private sector providers to make access to household latrines/toilets more affordable.
The identification of gaps, prioritization of needs, definition of strategic objectives, and the program’s technical approach were developed in a collaborative process led by the Millennium Water Alliance (MWA) in consultation with national and county governments, donors, non-governmental organizations and the private sector. The Kenya RAPID program rejects the “business-as-usual” approach to development. All five counties and every one of the partners is a co-investor: human capital, financial capital, software, equipment, and other organizational resources will be collectively employed to achieve impact.
KIWASH will work through public health clinics and local organizations already active in the agricultural and health/nutrition sectors (community savings groups, farmer groups, and community care groups), prioritizing locations with high percentages of malnourished or stunted children and where there are opportunities to link with related USAID activities. The KIWASH project is structured has seven main output areas (or program objectives):