Published on: 16/08/2023
The Government of Ghana and the global community are united in their commitment towards achieving 17 Sustainable Development Goals aimed at ending poverty, protecting the planet, and ensuring prosperity for all. These goals, adopted in 2015, are due to be redeemed by 2030.
IRC has contributed globally and nationally to achieving a profound shift in sector thinking towards delivering lasting water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) services to every man, woman and child, as part of our commitment to achieving Sustainable Development Goal 6: access to water and sanitation for all.
Despite making huge progress the global community and Ghana are running out of time. There is an urgent need to accelerate wholesale changes in how WASH services are conceived and delivered.
The vision of the Government of Ghana is that by 2030 "all people living in Ghana have access to adequate, safe, affordable, and reliable water services, practice safe sanitation and hygiene and that water resources are sustainably managed".
National, district and traditional leadership interacting with partners
With less than eight years remaining, the challenge remains formidable. More than two million people still rely on unimproved or surface water sources. Improvements in sanitation coverage have stalled and almost one in six people still practises open defecation. Low levels of hygiene pose a threat to human health and the environment.
The IRC Ghana strategic plan (2022-2026) details how IRC Ghana will support steps to strengthen WASH systems at national and district level to reach more people, by scaling up approaches that have proved themselves in Ghana and exploring and developing new ways to accelerate progress.
The framework builds on guiding principles and actions for achieving universal WASH services as set out by Agenda for Change in 2015, and puts a Ghana stamp on 'Destination 2030', a shared global vision by IRC and Water For People to close the gap by 2030 for 2 billion plus people who lack sustainable access to safe water and more than 4 billion who lack access to safely managed sanitation.
At IRC we act as a 'change hub', promoting collective action to achieve our shared vision for well-organised national systems that harness the collective actions of government, businesses, and civil society. We bring innovation and creative focus to the table. However, we remain acutely aware that only national government-led systems have the scale, financial muscle, and legitimacy to deliver water, sanitation, and hygiene services to everyone, forever.
We table this strategic framework in this context, as an inspiration to strengthen our efforts in Ghana and as a working tool to help us all achieve our common commitments.
Country Director, IRC Ghana
National and local level stakeholders welcome regional replication of the district wide Initiative