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Published on: 06/06/2013

Triple-S, short for Sustainable Services at Scale, is an initiative to address the challenge of sustainability of rural water supplies.

Why focus on sustainability of rural water supplies?

Rural water supply has been successfully extended to 65-76% of the rural population and Ghana is on track to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) target for water. But behind this success are a complex set of challenges to turn newly provided water infrastructure into water services that last.

At any given time, a substantial proportion of water supply infrastructure is either not functioning or functioning sub-optimally. This is a challenge across the developing world, and the pioneering work done by CWSA is helping to provide solutions that can also benefit other countries.

What is the initiative doing?

In Ghana the work is focused on promoting a Service Delivery Approach to rural water supply. This means a shift away from the dominant project-based approach, where the focus is narrowly on building new facilities, to a focus that includes the supporting institutional and management structures that ensure facilities continue to deliver water reliably according to agreed standards.

This process involves an analysis of what’s working and what isn’t in the sector and work to fill the gaps and overcome obstacles that are holding Ghana back from providing all of its citizens with water services.


  • Facilitating dialogue and learning in the sector – to support a move towards more sustainable approaches to rural water supply
  • Integrating the Service Delivery Approach into ongoing initiatives, e.g. the World Bank Sustainable Rural Water and Sanitation Project; piloting service delivery concepts in the Brong Ahafo, Volta and Northern Regions
  • Testing innovative approaches for service delivery in Akatsi, Sunyani West and East Gonja and mapping processes and steps for national level upscale
  • Improving harmonisation and coordination among government agencies, local government bodies, water service providers, donors and NGOs – clarifying roles and responsibilities and defining common ways of working
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