On World Water Day, 22 March 2018, Devex published a video and article written by Catherine Cheney about the importance of applying a systems approach in order to reach SDG 6:
"When you go to the toilet in the morning, you probably don't think that is a system," said Patrick Moriarty, chief executive officer of IRC, a WASH organization based in the Netherlands that is also an Agenda for Change founding partner, during a TED talk. "When you turn on the tap, water comes out. When you flush the toilet, everything goes away and is made safe. And that's because there is a system."
"Supporting systems change is necessary to achieve sustainable development outcomes, but it requires more patience and tolerance for ambiguity and risk than conventional philanthropy," said Louis Boorstin, managing director of the Osprey Foundation, which funds IRC, WaterAid, and Water for People as part of its Systems Change portfolio for WASH, and is also part of the Agenda for Change. "In short, it's about teaching someone to fish instead of giving them a fish ... while also recognizing that the fishing line could snap, the lake could dry up, or the local government could interfere in the fish market. But it's still better than handing out fish."
Read the full article and watch Devex's video here.
There are plenty of other examples of innovation that aren't "sexy," but are changing the game, Davis said.
Just a few years ago, "nobody knew how much it cost to keep a water point functioning," she said, until international think tank IRC WASH conducted a life cycle cost analysis in several districts in Ghana.
"If you think about how long people have been working in this field, it's shocking that we just didn't know," she said, adding that it's just one example of an under-recognized piece of the puzzle.
An interview with IRC's Head International Programme Catarina Fonseca on increasing water sector financing by improving governance, published on the Water Integrity Network's website on 30 January 2018.
A study by knowledge-focused non-profit organisation IRC Wash and Ghana's Community Water and Sanitation Agency (CWSA) shows that piped water supply systems in Ghana can be improved by a better management of the maintenance, rather than by a different finance of the maintenance.
The Country Director of IRC Ghana, Vida Duti has called on government and development partners to invest more in the water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) subsector to propel the needed change and development in communities.
She made the call in Aburi at a three-day engagement workshop with representatives of the Asutifi North District Assembly in the Brong Ahafo Region, National Development Planning Commission, World Vision International, Aquaya Institute and other partners in WASH-related subsector to finalise the district’s 15-year WASH masterplan. Read the full story on citifmonline.
Scaling technology and changing water systems in most countries is not possible without input from properly equipped local government. "They are responsible for making sure people have access to water services. They need to be invested and have the capacity to do the work," says Marieke Adank, programme officer at IRC.
Marieke Adank features in Raconteur's special report, Future of Water which is out in The Times newspaper today. The article can be found online here.
A national symposium on Defining Effective Drinking Water Management Models in Burkina Faso, 18-19 October 2017, was organised by IRC Burkina Faso, UNICEF and the Ministry of Water in Burkina Faso. The event was mentioned on 5 national news sites:
Experts have pointed to a growing momentum among politicians, finance and business leaders toward meeting the global water and sanitation development goals. However, many also warn that development finance is still woefully small, that silos persist among actors, and that not enough attention is being paid to reaching the poorest of the poor. Includes quotes from IRC CEO Patrick Moriarty on SDG6 and urban sanitation. [Sophie Edwards, Devex, 4 September 2017]
Report on the two-day training for members of the Ghana Wastsan Journalist Network (GWJN) in Accra held as part of the IRC-led Watershed | empowering citizens strategic partnership. [GNA/NewsGhana.org, 4 Sept 2017]
'We are driving a transformational agenda towards WASH delivery in Ghana', said minister for Sanitation and Water Resources, Joseph Kofi Adda at his press conference at the Stockholm World Water Week on 28 August.