Nepal: Ramechhap Water & Sanitation Program
Partner: Tamakoshi Sewa Samiti (TSS)
While it is famous for Mount Everest and while mountain trekking brings a lot of revenue to the country, most of the people in Nepal live in poverty. Preventable illnesses are widespread, water is often in short supply, and arable land is under great pressure. Politically, it is a new democracy after centuries of being ruled by a monarchy. After many years, a new constitution was recently approved by the Nepalese parliament. Although not a unanimously approved document, the hope is that it will result in political stability, which in turn will help improve the economy.
TSS (Tamakoshi Sewa Samiti) is one of the oldest and most respected non-government organizations in Nepal. It works in Ramechhap District (in the eastern part of the country) to alleviate poverty and help rural communities become more self-reliant. TSS helps village groups to organize themselves, manage finances, hold effective meetings, and undertake improvement projects. Their initial strategy is to establish and mobilize villagers to plan, organize, build and maintain water systems. When the water systems are installed, villagers often then choose to install sealed, sanitary toilet systems, which TSS and WNC also help them with. The combination of easily accessible potable water and greatly improved sanitation systems has greatly reduced the incidence of gastrointestinal disease in Ramechhap.
World Neighbours Canada, since 1989, has had the privilege of providing and facilitating financial support for the village water systems and the sealed, hygienic toilets that are all installed and maintained by local people. TSS provides only technical guidance and training, and the people themselves provide all local materials and all of the labour needed. Non local materials such as pipe, valves, cement, toilet pans and re bar, are purchased by TSS as needed, and are carried by men, women and children, from the end of the road to their remote villages.
Because the villagers take ownership of the projects from the earliest stages of planning and design, and because they are in charge of long term maintenance and repair, the projects have proven to be very successful.
Partner Website: Click here to visit the Tamakoshi Sewa Samiti (TSS) Program Website