Morgan Haiza, Project Manager, Zim AHEAD
12th June, 2013
The stakeholder monitoring exercise from the 29 to the 30th of May 2013 was aimed to assess progress in the implementation of water and sanitation and hygiene education UNICEF funded programme in Bindura. This exercise was brought about by stakeholders’ request that they needed to establish what was happening on the ground. The exercise covered the 12 wards of Bindura. Each ward was visited by a team of monitors with specific areas they were looking at. Some of the monitoring areas were the Water works, Sewage plant, Schools, Clinics and vulnerable institutions. A total of 16 members participated as monitors in the assessment. The groups were comprised of Councillors, representatives from Government Ministries and Residents Associations, ZRPolice and Council officials. The participants were divided into 3 groups, each with a specific target group and issues to assess.
SCOPE OF THE PROGRAMME
The exercise looked at a number of issues in the initial design of the water and sanitation programme in the town which included:
- Establishment of Health Clubs in all wards – monitors were assessing progress made so far.
- Programmes being implemented on the ground by the Health Clubs in their wards
- Capacity building trainings done so far for Council officials.
- Programmes planned/implemented by the local authority in line with water and sanitation education activities.
- Participation by schools, clinics and hospitals in the programme.
- Challenges being encountered by Health Clubs in the implementation of the programme.
- The exercise was very educative on the part of the monitors and the health clubs as various issues were discussed. The two day exercise created a platform were stakeholders interfaced openly and issues discussed in a very honest way. Appreciation of the programme was expressed from both the monitors and community.
- Monitors noted that some of the health clubs were already registering great successes in a number of health issues. In some wards residents were able to measure themselves in terms of hygiene improvements.
- The level of community participation was high in most areas visited. Communities were being involved in a number of clean-up campaigns and maintenance of boreholes in their wards.
- In some wards the streets are now visibly clean due to the cleanups being conducted by the Community Health Club members. In ward 8 the CHC has taken upon itself to clean Aerodrome shopping centre on daily basis.
- Schools visited showed that the programme is well accepted. At Salvation Army primary school the visit was conducted when the school health club was having a session on hygiene. The monitors had an opportunity to discuss with the School based facilitator and the club members. School Health Clubs are spear heading hygiene activities in the 10 schools participating in the project.
- The water treatment plant was capacitated by having its manpower trained, new pumps bought and installed, protective clothing supplied and chemicals to treat water.
- Boreholes have been drilled and all of them are functional. Breakdowns are attended to through the initiation of the clubs.
- Sewer bursts are being repaired, in fact there is a major rehabilitation of the main sewer line in the town. Staff at the sewage treatment ponds were received training on how to operate and maintain the area.
- The context of issues in the checklist data collection tools was not very clear to most of the monitors. There was need for monitors to have gone through the checklist together for them to get an understanding of the scope of the issues raised.
- Two days proved to be inadequate for the groups to go through the checklist. This resulted in the exercise being rushed in certain areas. This compromised the quality of work performed by the monitors.
- The monitors and the health clubs appreciated this kind of interaction which benefited everyone at the end. It is against this background that more exercises of this nature be conducted to facilitate smooth implementation of the WASH programme in our town.
- Monitors can also use their influence to mobilise and actually explain the importance of the project to the residents.