Tag Archives: AMCOW

AfricaSan 4 dates and venue confirmed!


The African Ministers’ Council on Water (AMCOW) and the Government of Senegal are pleased to announce the dates and venue of the fourth AfricaSan conference, AfricaSan 4.
Date: 8 – 10 October 2014
Location: Dakar, Senegal (King Fahd Hotel)

Registration website: coming soon, watch this space!

AMCOW training consultancy on sanitation & hygiene policy development

The African Ministers’ Council on Water (AMCOW) needs the services of a training service provider to carry out a sanitation and hygiene policy training.  Focal persons in Burundi, Chad, Sierra Leone and Zimbabwe need to be brought up to speed on drawing up plans and strategies .

The aim of this small (20 days) but interesting assignment is to:

train the focal countries on the process of developing a policy document and costed implementation plans and strategies for ending open defecation in those countries, and how to operationalise them.

The assignment supports a US$ 2 million Gates Foundation funded policy and advocacy project being implemented by AMCOW .

Closing date for receipt of applications is March 7, 2014.

Read the full Terms of Reference.

Please do not submit applications or requests for information to Sanitation Updates.

Africa: AMCOW gets US$ 2 million Gates grant to build national sanitation capacities

The African Ministers Council on Water (AMCOW) has been awarded a US$ 2 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to help countries build capacities for sanitation policy development, monitoring and advocacy.

AMCOW will use the 3-year grant for:

  • technical guidance and training to four fragile counties to develop and adopt national sanitation and hygiene policies and plans
  • organising the 4th AfricaSan conference and awards to boost implementation of the AfricaSan Action Plan and eThekwini ministerial commitments
  • country support in using the African mechanism for water and sanitation monitoring, evaluation and reporting.

“Across the globe, about 2.6 billion do not have access to safe sanitation. Africa accounts for almost 40 percent of these figures.” said Bai Mass Taal, AMCOW Executive Secretary.

AMCOW is an initiative of African Ministers responsible for water and a Specialized Technical Committee on water and sanitation for the African Union.

In 2011, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation launched its Reinvent the Toilet initiative at AfricaSan 3 in Kigali, Rwanda.

Source: AMCOW, 18 Dec 2012

Sanitation at the 4th Africa Water Week, 14-18 May 2012, Cairo, Egypt

Marking the 10th anniversary of the formation of the African Ministers Council on Water (AMCOW), the 4th Africa Water Week will celebrate AMCOW’s achievements and reflect on opportunities for achieving water security and adequate sanitation in Africa. Over 1,000 participants are expected.

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AMCOW AfricaSan Awards 2010 Winners: Feliciano dos Santos, Takiso Achame and David Kuria

A musician and activist whose songs about using latrines and washing hands are positively influencing the hygiene practices of communities in Mozambique; a widow who has risen through her caste status to lead a campaign against open defecation in her village in Ethiopia; and a toilet entrepreneur whose innovative partnership with local authorities is changing the way public toilets in Kenyan towns are managed, are the top winners of this year’s AMCOW AfricaSan Awards.

Feliciano dos Santos. Photo: © Steven Fisch Photography / The Independent

Musician Feliciano dos Santos was announced winner of the Grassroots Champion Award for dedicating his life and his music to campaigning for better public health through clean water and adequate sanitation. Santos and his Massukos Band have been using music to inspire thousands of villagers in rural Mozambique to curb the spread of disease by adopting good hygiene practices, such as washing hands, boiling drinking water and building latrines.

Takiso Achame, a widowed member of a traditionally discriminated community in the remote village of Shashera in Southern Ethiopia, was picked for the Distinguished Woman Leader in Sanitation for her exemplary local leadership over a communal cause. Even though her community often attracts the least attention from health promoters and local leaders in terms of accessing water supply, sanitation and hygiene services including awareness, Achame has become the self-appointed champion to eliminate open defecation in her village.

David Kuria won the Public Service Award for implementing a partnership model that is delivering safe, clean and affordable sanitation to the urban poor in Kenya. His company, Ecotact, is pioneering a private-public partnership approach with local authorities, and water and sewerage utilities to build public toilet malls in urban centres and informal settlements. By demonstrating the viability of sanitation as a business, David has been able to attract more than US$1.2 Million for the construction of 40 public toilet facilities in 12 municipalities in Kenya.

The top winners were announced by the African Ministers’ Council on Water (AMCOW) Task Force on Sanitation during the Africa Water Week being held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (November 22-26, 2010).

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AfricaSan 3 taking place in Kigali, Rwanda from 19-21 July 2011

Preparations have started for AfricaSan 3, the 3rd African Conference on Sanitation and Hygiene. The Rwandan government is hosting the conference, which is being organised by the AMCOW Sanitation Task Force, in the capital Kigali from 19-21 July 2011.

The conference objectives are to:

  • present and exchange knowledge on strategies to overcome key bottlenecks to implementing large scale sanitation and hygiene programs
  • strengthen the evidence base for scaling up sanitation and hygiene programs in Africa
  • kickstart the 5 year drive to get Africa back on track to meet the sanitation MDG and achieve sustainable universal coverage

The preliminary program includes two types of learning opportunities:

  1. Thematic learning exchange which draws from key experiences and studies to address critical issues – these sessions are designed by the conference organisers.
  2. Seminars hosted by agencies or groups of agencies, showcasing their latest thinking and findings – these sessions are designed by the agency in consultation with the conference organizers.

The Second African Conference on Sanitation and Hygiene – AfricaSan+5 – took place in Durban, South Africa from February 18–21, 2008. It produced the eThekwini Declaration, which included “firm resolutions to place
sanitation and hygiene at the top of the development agenda in Africa”.

For more info about AfricaSan 3 contact the Conference Director Piers Cross, pierscross_2000@yahoo.com

AfricaSan Awards 2010: Nomination opened

The AfricaSan Awards, organized by the African Ministers’ Council on water (AMCOW), are dedicated to recognizing outstanding efforts and achievements in sanitation and hygiene in Africa which result in large-scale, sustainable behaviour changes and tangible impacts. They also aim to raise the profile of sanitation and hygiene by drawing attention to successful approaches, promoting excellence in leadership, innovation and sanitation and hygiene improvements in Africa, and providing incentives for action.

There are 3 award categories:

  1. Public Service Award
  2. Distinguished Woman Leader in Sanitation and Hygiene
  3. Grassroots Champion Award

You may nominate yourself or another individual or institution. Entries may be made by individuals or organizations based within or outside Africa that are involved in sanitation and hygiene-related activities within Africa.

Nomination forms can be downloaded from the AMCOW site.

Nominations can be submitted in English or French to africasanawards@amcow.net by 30 October 2010.
Winners will be invited to the Award ceremony during the 3rd Africa Water Week on November 2010 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

For more information please visit www.amcow.net or email thompson@amcow.net or call Thompson Abu at 00234-803-311-9493 (mobile); 00234-9-7800440 (telephone).

Source: WSSCC

AMCOW AfricaSan Awards 2009 Winners

The African Ministers’ Council on Water (AMCOW) has named winners of Africa’s premier awards for exemplary achievements in sanitation and hygiene.

The AMCOW AfricaSan top honor for Leadership has been awarded to His Royal Highness Chief Macha, a traditional and community leader from Zambia who has used his status in a uniquely proactive manner to advocate for improved sanitation, not just in his Kingdom of Tonga which has now attained Open Defecation Free (ODF) status, but also in the wider district and province with a multitude of stakeholders (see related blog post).

Prof. Albert M. Wright (left). Photo: IISD

AMCOW AfricaSan awarded a Lifetime Achievement honor to Professor Albert Wright, who for more than four decades has made significant contributions to strategic development of water, sanitation and hygiene at global, African and national levels. He has been teacher, researcher, innovator, investment adviser, policy advisor and inspiration and mentor to an entire generation of the African water and sanitation community.

The AMCOW AfricaSan honor to an NGO/Civil Society Institution has been awarded to the Ethiopia Water Supply, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) Movement, a multi‐stakeholder coalition that has been exceptionally successful in promoting behavioural change on water, sanitation and hygiene, and increase the political and social commitment for progress in these areas.

Dr. Peter Morgan at the NETSSAF Conference, 2008. Photo: EcoSanRes

The AMCOW AfricaSan honor for Technical Innovation was awarded to Dr Peter Morgan, a Zimbabwean national, who for four decades has provided Africa with the most innovative technical ideas in sanitation and hygiene directly affecting poor people.

A special commendation was made to His Royal Highness Prince Willem‐Alexander for his global leadership role in advancing the cause of improved sanitation and hygiene.

AMCOW also announced the following awards:

  • The AMCOW AfricaSan Award (Runner up) for Leadership to WES Sudan.
  • The AMCOW AfricaSan Award (Finalist) for Leadership to The Daily Mail (Zambia).
  • The AMCOW AfricaSan Award (Runner up) for Technical Innovation to the Centre Régional pour l’Eau Potable et l’Assainissement à faible coût (CREPA).
  • The AMCOW AfricaSan Award (Finalist) for Technical Innovation to the Office National de l’Assainissement du Sénégal (ONAS).
  • The AMCOW AfricaSan Award (Runner up) for NGO/Civil Society to Water for People (Malawi).
  • The AMCOW AfricaSan Award (Runner up) for NGO/Civil Society to Africa Media Aid (Ghana).

AMCOW is the driving force behind the AfricaSan movement, a regional initiative that seeks to place sanitation and hygiene at the top of the development agenda in Africa. In 2008, the Africa Union Heads of State Summit mandated AMCOW to co‐ordinate implementation and monitoring of the eThekwini Declaration – which seeks to assist African countries to accelerate the achievement of national and global targets on water, sanitation and hygiene.

The AMCOW AfricaSan Awards are dedicated to recognizing outstanding efforts and achievements in sanitation and hygiene in Africa which result in large‐scale, sustainable behavior changes and tangible impacts.

The 2009 Awards are the first in a series of honors for achievements in three categories:

  • The Leadership Award honors individuals or institutions for strong leadership to sanitation and/or hygiene improvement through policy and strategy development, advocacy, institutional arrangements, financing, coordination and capacity development.
  • The Technical Innovation Award honors individual and institutional contributions to the improvement of technical solutions for sanitation services and products to make them affordable, reliable, and sustainable.
  • The NGO/Civil Society Award honors individual and institutional support to and mobilization of communities for the improvement of their sanitation and hygienic conditions.

Other categories will be honored in 2010.

The awards are administered by AMCOW, in collaboration with the Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council (WSSCC), the Water and Sanitation Program (WSP), the African Development Bank (AfDB), UNICEF, the UN Secretary‐General’s Advisory Board on Water and Sanitation (UNSGAB), UN‐Water Africa, WaterAid and the Africa Civil Society Network on Water and Sanitation (ANEW).

Read more: DWAF, 09 Nov 2009

Recommendations on the Strategy and Road Map for the Implementation of the eThikweni Declaration

The Executive Committee of the African Ministers’ Council Water (AMCOW) met from 24-28 November 2008 at the UN Office in Nairobi, Kenya, under the theme “Carrying forward the Sharm El Sheikh Declaration and Commitments on Water and Sanitation (adopted by the African Union Summit, Egypt, June 2008).”

The meetings included that of the AfricaSan Taskforce on the eThekwini Declaration on 26 November 2008.

The AfricaSan Taskforce came up with the following recommendations:

  • To develop a work program for the implementation of the AfricaSan follow-up activities (Awards, communication and knowledge, M&E, monitoring commitments implementation, country action plans, International Task Force meeting, and preparation of the AfricaSan 03) and a funding proposal for the activities implementation, including a staffing plan by the end of February 2009
  • To hold an AfricaSan Awards Ceremony in 2009 back-to back with an event (AMCOW meeting, 2nd African Water Week), etc.)
  • To assist countries develop national AfricaSan action plan and conduct a peer review mechanism to enhance cross learning and improve sanitation profile
  • To open an AfricaSan window within the AMCOW web site
  • To report to AMCOW every 6 months on the implementation of the eThekwini commitments implementation using the proposed indicators and with the support of the AMCOW TAC members
  • To work with relevant initiatives on M&E (JMP, GF4A, GLAAS, etc) and countries to include sanitation and hygiene in all M&E activities and programs
  • To hold every quarter a VC meeting of the AfricaSan International Task Force and every 6 months a face-to-face meeting
  • To develop a concept note for AfricaSan 03 by the end the first quarter of 2009

Furthermore, there was two general AMCOW recommendations on sanitation:

  • With regard to the eThekwini Declaration, country level implementation of the Declaration should be the subject of systematic follow-up;
  • WSP [Water and Sanitation Program] to work with AMCOW Secretariat to finalize its communication strategy, put together a team to decide on criteria and promote nominations, and to develop mechanisms to “raise the bar” on expectations with regard to sanitation development.

Read the full Summary of recommendations of the meeting

Source: IISD Linkages – Executive Committee and Technical Advisory Committee of the African Ministers’ Council on Water (AMCOW)