Updated: Thursday 03 December 2015

COWASH Organized CR-WSP training

Community-Led Accelerated WASH (COWASH), in collaboration with Ministry of Water, Irrigation and Electricity (MoWIE); and World Health Organization (WHO), organized and conducted Climate Resilient Water Safety Planning (CR-WSP) Training from 23-27 November 2015 in Bishoftu city of Oromia Region.

Building the capacity of the participants in CR-WSP was the general objective of this training which was able to bring together more than 30 people from different WASH sector bureaus in the five COWASH regions.

Arto Suominen, the Chief Technical Advisor of COWASH project, who was making the opening remarks, said that Water Safety Planning is an instrument to ensure the provision of safe water. “Furthermore, WSP marries water, agriculture and health together. It is the very important tool to bring the three sectors together,” says Mr. Suominen.

According to Osman Yiha, the training facilitator, the training enabled participants to understand concepts of CR-WSP. The training, Osman believes, also provided the opportunity for the participants to learn from each other’s experience. “We believe these people have different experience in WASH programs, particularly in WSP. They bring that to the table and able to learn from each other,” says Osman. According to Osman, the training is designed to encourage interaction and discussion which maximizes the learning.

Climate resilient water safety planning is an approach that focuses on the provision of quality, quantity, affordable and sustainable safe water. It calls for a comprehensive and continuous risk assessment and management of the water supply system from the catchment to consumer. In do so, it is profoundly crucial for the plan to consider climate change.

Most of the participants were taking part in the climate resilient water safety planning training for the first time. “We are aware that water safety planning is as important as the provision of water supply schemes. WSP is related to the quality, quantity and sustainability of the water,” says Muluneh Abele, member of Amhara Regional Support Unit. 

During the reflection session, at the end of the training, all of the participants said the training was participatory. The training which was lively with group discussions and practical sessions, was considered very relevant. “We have now a clear idea about Climate Resilient Water Safety Planning. We have a better understanding how to make WSP the integral part of the provision of safe water supply,” says Addisu Fente from Amhara RSU. 

As this is the training of trainers, the participants are a plan to cascade the training and train the relevant bodies at the regional, zonal and woreda levels. According to Habtemariam Tiluhun, water quality expert at the Water Resource Development Bureau of SNNP, in addition to training others, his bureau will pilot WSP in one or two areas this budget year. “I believe this pilot project will provide us a good starting point from which we will scale up CR-WSP,” concludes Habtemariam.