Category Archives: Funding

NEW! Finance Brief 6: The UK Public Works Loans Board: central government loans for local government investment. By Richard Franceys

ABSTRACT: The UK’s Public Works Loans Board was a mechanism through which local government could access low-cost loans through central government. It played a key role in water and sanitation improvements in the UK between the 1870s and the 1980s. Until very recently, it remained a major vehicle for central-to-local government lending in the UK, and it has been a valuable template for many similar systems worldwide. This Finance Brief outlines the history of this body, still very relevant as a model today.

http://www.publicfinanceforwash.com/ZkA

Global Sanitation Fund empowers close to 10 million to end open defecation

The latest results from the Global Sanitation Fund (GSF) show that national programmes stretching from Cambodia to Senegal have enabled close to 10 million people in more than 36,500 communities to end open defecation.

These results are published in the GSF’s latest Progress Report, highlighting cumulative results from the start of the fund up to the middle of 2015. Nationally-led programmes supported by the GSF have helped:

  • 8.21 million people access improved toilets
  • 9.92 million people in 36,524 communities live in open defecation free environments
  • 13.46 million people access handwashing facilities

Currently, 2.4 billion people, close to 35 percent of the global population, lack access to decent sanitation. Of those, close to a billion defecate in the open. Diarrheal disease, largely caused by poor sanitation and hygiene, is a leading cause of malnutrition, stunting and child mortality, claiming nearly 600,000 lives of children under 5 every year. Inadequate facilities also affect education and economic productivity and impact the dignity and personal safety of women and girls.

GSF reaches 10 million - Slider

Established by WSSCC, the GSF funds behaviour change activities to help large numbers of poor people in the hardest-to-reach areas attain safe sanitation and adopt good hygiene practices. These activities are community-led, support national efforts, and bring together a diverse group of stakeholders in order to address, at a large scale, the severe deficiencies in access to sanitation and hygiene.

The GSF is a pooled financing mechanism with the potential to further accelerate access to sanitation for hundreds of millions of people over the next 15 years. Between 2014 and mid-2015, the GSF reported a 95 percent increase in people with improved toilets across target regions in 13 countries. During this same period, the GSF has also supported a more than 40 percent increase in the number of people living in open defecation free environments in those same areas. The United Nations system has identified global funds as an important tool to enable member countries to achieve their national development targets, including those for sanitation and hygiene. Read more

Results reported by the GSF have been achieved due to the work of more than 200 partners, including executing agencies and sub-grantees composed of representatives from governments, international organizations, academic institutions, the United Nations and civil society. One of the strongest success factors in the GSF approach is that it allows flexibility for countries to develop their programmes within the context of their own institutional framework and according to their own specific sanitation and hygiene needs, sector capacity and stakeholders. This implementation methodology is used to reach large numbers of households in a relatively short period of time and is vital for scaling up safe sanitation and hygiene practices.

The Governments of Australia, Finland, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom have contributed to the GSF since its establishment in 2008. More than $109 million has been committed for 13 country programmes, which aim to help more than 36 million people end open defecation.

Download the GSF Progress Update here

FINANCE BRIEF: South Africa’s Equitable Share Formula: a useful model for WASH financing?

South Africa’s Equitable Share Formula is a mechanism for transfer of funds from central to local government, to support basic services including water and sanitation. This Finance Brief outlines how the system works, and reports on its use for water and sanitation. There are a number of problems with implementation of the Equitable Share in South Africa; however, we consider that the mechanism per se is good, and can be a useful model for other countries.

http://www.publicfinanceforwash.com/resources/finance-brief-5-south-africas-equitable-share-formula-useful-model-wash-financing

The role of mobile in improved sanitation access

The role of mobile in improved sanitation access - coverHow can mobile channels can support sanitation service delivery while building new engagement models with customers in underserved settings? A new report [1] by the GSMA Mobile for Development Utilities Programme reviews opportunities and case studies.

The report begins with an overview of global sanitation access in 2015 and the different approaches currently being used to improve access. This is followed by a review of the potential uses of mobile channels in the sanitation value chain including examples of current applications.

Continue reading

Can We Finance Sustainable Development?

Huffington Post blog by Chris Williams, WSSCC Executive Director

The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) have been the most comprehensive international poverty alleviation movement in history. Since 1990, extreme poverty has been cut by half; 17,000 fewer children die each day; and 2.3 billion people gained access to clean drinking water. A multi-stakeholder coalition of governments, international organizations, and civil society groups have tackled crucial issues ranging from education to improved sanitation to gender equality.

And yet, the challenge of empowering hundreds of millions more to gain access to proper healthcare, sanitary facilities, and education is enormous. As more countries have attained middle-income status, inequality has soared. The wealthiest individuals have become wealthier while growth-with-equity remains a distant prospect.

In Dodoma, Tanzania, a community group comes together every Saturday to organize their finances. Villagers earn interest on their savings and give out loans. Everyone plays a role - here three keyholders open the chest containing the loan registrations. Photograph: WSSCC/Jenny Matthews

In Dodoma, Tanzania, a community group comes together every Saturday to organize their finances. Villagers earn interest on their savings and give out loans. Everyone plays a role – here three keyholders open the chest containing the loan registrations. Photograph: WSSCC/Jenny Matthews

This week, the global development community will congregate in Addis Ababa to decide how to finance the next fifteen years of inclusive growth and the elimination of poverty. The positive news is that Member States have painstakingly created a set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), a comprehensive post-2015 plan that will strike at the heart of global poverty, and set the poorest nations and communities on the path towards equitable and long-lasting growth.

While the goals seek to augment, broaden, and expand upon the wide-ranging successes of the MDGs, the sobering fact is that the conventional model for financing development is in need of a massive overhaul. Traditional channels of overseas development assistance (ODA) from developed nations to the developing world are not only insufficient for financing the ambitious post-2015 agenda, but it’s clear that development as we know it is no longer relevant, nor desirable.

No longer relevant, because the world has changed and the expertise that will drive post-2015 growth is being cultivated in-country by capitalizing on local solutions. And no longer desirable, because much of the development assistance has been self-serving and ineffectively utilized in the first place. The system is broken and it is time to redo development, building from the ground up.

This week’s conference on how to finance development is therefore a seminal turning point for how we will solve some of the most intractable development challenges of the day. A turning point because there is recognition from donor countries that they need to be more effective in selecting funding priorities and disbursing ODA. And a turning point in that the developing countries are realizing that the solution lies at their fingertips.

Developing countries harbour a technical knowledge base within their borders – the expertise, innovations, and solutions necessary for inclusive growth are home-grown and just waiting to be tapped. Increasingly, innovative citizens are creatively devising south-south, country-to-country delivery models for development. Channelled effectively, this has the potential to finance the vast majority of sustainable growth in the developing world.

This is a radical departure from the traditional paradigm of massive donor-funded agencies issuing a loan, which often takes three years to develop, 100 staff to implement, and then is neither tracked nor delivered. Donor funds can now form a much smaller portion of the resources required to solve the development challenges in the global South. The question for governments that continue to provide official ODA is therefore how best to apply funds that can leverage these different sources of domestic capital?

One of the answers lies in innovative financing methods for development. Global multi-stakeholder partnerships have proven successful in the field of health, including the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, the Global Sanitation Fund (GSF), and the Vaccine Alliance (GAVI). All of these funds use ODA efficiently by leveraging community savings, public investment and private capital, therefore putting into action the principles behind the SDGs.

The GSF, a fund administered by my organization, the UNOPS-hosted Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council (WSSCC), invests in behavior change activities that enable large numbers of people in developing countries to improve their sanitation and adopt good hygiene practices. The only global fund solely dedicated to sanitation and hygiene, the GSF is light of foot and heavy on scale. Households and local governments work with local entrepreneurs and a network of hundreds of partners. Together, they create the conditions for tens of millions of people to live in open defecation free environments and access adequate toilets and handwashing facilities.

Importantly, individual household investments in sanitation mobilized by GSF programming currently amount to four times the value of its funding. A grant of $5 million can therefore yield $20 million in community savings per country. The most powerful by-product of this investment then materializes in the form of public capital, once governments realize the commitment that their people have made. Private sector engagement is yet another positive outcome, as demand for products and services is generated through the behavior change of society. This is the exact model that the development world is seeking -community-based solutions that are government supported and commercially operated.

Read the full article on Huffington Post

Sustainable Sanitation Alliance (SuSanA) is holding a 3-week thematic discussion on the topic: Urban Sanitation Finance – from Macro to Micro Level

6349815993_d122d1f5c6_o_mini_5The second SuSanA thematic discussion “Urban Sanitation Finance – from Macro to Micro Level” will start today, Tuesday 23 June 2015, on the SuSanA Discussion Forum.
The discussion will look at financing sanitation in the urban area from different angles – What are current levels of public finance at national level for urban sanitation? Is local taxation a key? What role could microfinance play to support on-site sanitation and how could different financing mechanisms be combined innovatively at city level?

During the discussion six experts on sanitation finance are providing leadership and responses on questions raised by Forum Users:

  • Theme I – Public Finance (23 June – 2 July): Catarina Fonseca (Senior Programme Officer and head of the International and Innovation Programme at IRC) and Guy Norman (Head of Evaluation, Research and Learning at Water&Sanitation for the Urban Poor, WSUP)
  • Theme II – Microfinance (30 June – 10 July): Sophie Trémolet (Director of Trémolet Consulting) and Goufrane Mansour (Consultant at Trémolet Consulting) on the topic of microfinance
  • Theme III – City level sustainable cost recovery (9 July– 16 July): Antoinette Kome (a global sector coordinator for WASH at SNV Netherlands Development Organisation ) and Kumi Abeysuriya (a senior research consultant of the Institute for Sustainable Futures, University of Technology, Sydney)

During these periods, regular summaries of forum entries will be posted to keep you updated on our conversation.

To participate in the discussion and to get prepared with a few suggested readings, please visit the discussion on the SuSanA Forum or the SuSanA website.

For any questions, please post on the forum or contact us directly at info@susana.org.

We look forward to hearing your contributions on this upcoming discussion!

Global Sanitation Fund reports large-scale advances in sanitation and hygiene in 13 countries

Lucie Obiokang with the toilet she built after being triggered.

Lucie Obiokang with the toilet she built after being triggered.

A new report shows that the Global Sanitation Fund (GSF) has supported governments and hundreds of their national partners in 13 countries, stretching from Cambodia to Senegal, to enable 7 million people in more than 20,500 communities to end open defecation.   

These results are published in the GSF’s latest Progress Report (link to report; link to photos), which highlights cumulative results from the start of the fund until the end of 2014. Nationally-led programmes supported by the GSF have enabled:

  • 4.2 million people with improved toilets
  • 7 million people and more than 20,500 communities to be open-defecation free
  • 8 million people with handwashing facilities

Currently, 2.5 billion people, or 40% of the global population, lack access to decent sanitation. Of those, more than a billion defecate in the open. Diarrheal disease, largely caused by poor sanitation and hygiene, is a leading cause of malnutrition, stunting and child mortality, claiming nearly 600,000 under-5 lives every year. Inadequate facilities also affect education and economic productivity and impact the dignity and personal safety of women and girls.

Established by the Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council (WSSCC), the GSF funds behaviour change activities to help large numbers of poor people in the hardest-to-reach areas attain safe sanitation and adopt good hygiene practices. These activities are community-led, support national efforts, and bring together a diverse group of stakeholders in order to address, at a large scale, the severe deficiencies in access to sanitation and hygiene.

The GSF is a pooled financing mechanism with the potential to further accelerate access to sanitation for hundreds of millions of people over the next 15 years. Between 2013 and 2014 alone, the GSF reported an almost 90 percent increase in the number of people living open-defecation free in target regions of 13 countries[1] across Africa and Asia. During this same period, the GSF has also supported a 55 percent increase in the number of people with access to improved toilets in those same areas. The United Nations system has identified global funds as an important tool to enable member countries to achieve their national development targets, including those for sanitation and hygiene.[2]

“These results prove that we are moving closer to our vision of a world where everybody has sustained sanitation and hygiene, supported by safe water,” said Chris Williams, Executive Director of WSSCC.  “This is a crucial step towards achieving better health, reducing poverty and ensuring environmental sustainability for the most marginalized people in the world.”

These GSF results have been achieved due to the work of more than 200 partners, including executing agencies and sub-grantees composed of representatives from governments, international organizations, academic institutions, the United Nations and civil society. One of the strongest success factors in the GSF approach is that it allows flexibility for countries to develop their programmes within the context of their own institutional framework and according to their own specific sanitation and hygiene needs, sector capacity and stakeholders. This implementation methodology is used to reach large numbers of households in a relatively short period of time and is vital for scaling up safe sanitation and hygiene practices.

“GSF is one of the few funds for government-led, donor-funded sanitation and hygiene programmes,” said Williams. “It can uniquely serve as a catalyst to the wider sector as a model that is replicable for others interested in large-scale behaviour change.”

Reaching scale has required that sub-grantees can identify influential, strategic communities, and make effective use of natural leaders, religious and local leaders, or hundreds of others who serve as individual sanitation and hygiene champions. GSF supported programmes apply a local delivery mechanism that engages households in thousands of villages, which enables people to make informed decisions about their sanitation and hygiene behaviour that can improve their health, education and productivity.

The report also highlights the GSF’s impact on national programmes. In Uganda, there are now more than 1.4 million people living in open-defecation free (ODF) environments, thanks to GSF-funded activities, and close to three million people have been reached by hygiene messages as a result of decentralized local government intervention. In Madagascar, over 1.3 million people are now living in ODF environments – in all 22 of the countries regions – and India’s GSF-supported programme has over 782,000 people with handwashing facilities.

“Access to improved sanitation has to be a sustainable reality for every person in the community, regardless of age, gender or disability, in order for the health and other benefits to be enjoyed by all,” said David Shimkus, Programme Director of the GSF. “This report shows that GSF-supported programmes are making major strides in achieving improved sanitation and hygiene for the most vulnerable, and all stakeholders will continue to work together to ensure such progress continues.”

The Governments of Australia, Finland, the Netherlands, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom have contributed to the GSF since its establishment in 2008. Close to $105 million has been committed for 13 country programmes, which aim to reach 36 million people.

[1] Benin, Cambodia, Ethiopia, India, Kenya, Madagascar, Malawi, Nepal, Nigeria, Senegal, Tanzania, Togo and Uganda.

[2] See draft outcome document for the forthcoming Addis Ababa Accord of the Third International Conference on Financing for Development, and the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network Financing for Sustainable Development report and its Role of Global Funds in a Post-2015 Development Framework.