WASH FORUM (DECEMBER SERIES) HIT THE ISSUES OF WASH ON URBAN POOR
By: Phurba Sange Moktan
WASH FORUM, a regular interaction program, scheduled at last Friday of every English month in which December series was focused on the issues of WASH on urban poor entitled, “WASH Issues and Informal Urban Settlement of Nepal” among 48 youths from various institutions and organizations on 31st December, 2010 with joint collaboration of “paschim paaila”, ENPHO and WASH-RCNN.
The program was divided into two sessions, first for Key Note Presentation and second for Thematic Paper Presentation. As a key note presenter first session was led by Mrs. Lajana Manandhar, Executive Director, Lumanti. “Changing thoughts for urban poor from squatter to informal settlement is also a big change happened during 15 years’,” Said by Mrs. Lajana Manandar, Lumanti with initiating her key note presentation. She shared her ideas on major WASH issues of informal urban settlements, as inadequate facilities, low priority from government and ownership issue of land (particularly for squatter communities) and also highlighted that unless and until such issues are address, the remarkable outputs cannot be taken. She also shared some solution approaches for solving these key issues. “Out of 366 settlements only 34 % and 48 % urban poor communities have access to safe drinking water and own latrine respectively” She said, “approaches and interventions concentrating to urban poor settlements from government and other stakeholders are the key requisites to promote the sustainable solutions.”
Second session was led by Dr. Murali Gopal Ranjitkar, Senior Environmental Consultant, DRILP-ADB as a Thematic Paper Presenter. He presented his presentation based on his Ph.D. Research completed recently on the topic entitled, “Management of Drinking Water Delivery System for Urban Poor Communities in Kathmandu Valley.” He presented his ideas based on the research along with the work experiences on WASH Sector on present management practices, urban poor consumers’ perceptions on water systems and practices, etc. He also recommended some possible alternatives for the effective management of water systems with respects to the kinds of communities which was got interesting by the participants. “The ultimate solution can only be seen if joining hands are seen from all sectors and levels, otherwise it will just be a preaching proverbs but nothing else.” Said Dr. Murali, at the end of his session.
Finally, the program was concluded with the concluding remarks by Mr. Phurba Sange Moktan, Coordinator, “paschim paaila” at around 4 pm.