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Sustainability index of rural water services: Burkina Faso and Niger

This survey was commissioned by the Global Water Initiative (GWI) three years after the start of the 2008-2012 programme in West Africa with the aim of assessing the sustainability potential of the rural water services supported by GWI during this period and to learn lessons from governance and management systems. It is part of the ongoing learning and evaluation of GWI's work.

Between 2007 and 2012, GWI supported rural integrated water resources management (IWRM), water supply and sanitation programmes in 13 countries in Africa and Central America. The work in West Africa began in 2008. During this phase of the GWI programme, GWI in West Africa was a consortium led by the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED) and SOS Sahel UK, in partnership with CARE, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), Catholic Relief Services (CRS) and local non-government organisations, with operations in Senegal, Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger, Ghana and to a lesser extent, Guinea.

By 2012, GWI West Africa was working in 133 communities in 40 municipalities in Niger, Burkina Faso, Ghana and Mali. A total of 26,565 families (approximately 166,277 people) participated and benefited directly from the programme activities.

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Agriculture in large-scale rice irrigation schemes needs to be made to work for both the state, in terms of economic returns and national food security, and for the smallholders whose livelihoods depend on it. When it comes to the development of new dams and large-scale irrigation, more information is needed about their economic viability and how the water, land, and economic benefits can be shared equitably to support local development.

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Global Water Initiative — West Africa