The Department of Public Health Engineering (DPHE) has been implementing a development project aimed at ensuring easy access to safe water and sanitation facilities for the poor in the unserved and undeserved areas, reports agency.
According to official sources, the four-year project titled “Hygiene, Sanitation and Water Supply (HYSAWA)” is being implemented in 200 Union Parishads (UPs) under 25 upazilas of the northwestern Rajshahi, Naogaon and Chapainawabganj districts and in 146 UPs under 19 upazilas of six coastal belt districts.
The prime objective of the project is to develop and demonstrate sustainable hygiene, sanitation and water supply service delivery through local government institutions in consultation with community people.
Out of total estimated cost of Taka 266 crore, the community will contribute 35.51 percent that will ensure community ownership and enhance scheme management capacity.
In addition to funding by the government of Bangladesh, the Danida has been extending financial support to implement the project that has started from the current year. DPHE Executive Engineer Saifur Rahman told BSS that shallow water technologies have become ineffective currently and demand for deep tube wells has increased in some pocket areas particularly in the vast tract of Barind region due to rapid declining of groundwater table along with arsenic contamination in shallow aquifer in some areas of the country.
But, he said, cost of the deep tube well is very high and especially unaffordable for the poor community. In this situation, our public health is in a threatened condition due to lack of proper sanitation facilities and inadequate hygiene practice. Major activities of the project are to promote safe hygiene, stop open defecation, protects safe water source, environmental sanitation and awareness raising on personal hygiene using community management promotion approach.
Apart from installation of community latrine, small drainage system and waste management system, the project has also provision for installation of shallow and deep tube wells, dug well, rain water harvesting, pond sand filter, iron and arsenic removal plant and pipe water supply system.
In addition to promoting community-led total sanitation and to increasing coverage of safe water supply, the project will work to improve hygiene behavior and practice through strengthening the capacity of local government institutions and non-government stakeholders.
After successful implementation, the project will contribute to reduce poverty along improving standard of living, officials added. Meanwhile, the DPHE has arranged a launching workshop of the project here today attended by all the UNOs, UP Chairmen and government and non-government officials concerned.
Source: The Daily Commercial Times