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Published on: 03/06/2024


Awareness raising meeting in Satkhira Sadar, Bangladesh (photo courtesy of Simavi)
Awareness raising meeting in Satkhira Sadar Upazila, Bangladesh (photo courtesy of Simavi)

2023 marked the last full operational year of IRC’s work with the WASH SDG Programme, a five year + programme, funded by the Dutch Government through the Inclusive Green Growth Department (IGG) within the Directorate-General for International Cooperation (DGIS) of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, spanning seven countries across Africa and Asia: Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Indonesia, Nepal, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia.

With a total budget of over €600k, IRC has been active in all subprogrammes. A highlight was undertaking the endline sustainability checks across the whole programme -14 in total. These have been critical in mapping progress and challenges with respect to ensuring long term sustainability and energising the discussion between government partners and programme staff about long term support to services across schools, healthcare centres and in communities. In Ethiopia, Uganda and Bangladesh, we supported local government partners in master-planning and lifecycle costing, advocacy and media work. We also engaged in knowledge management and provided support to learning platforms.

Strategic objective

The programme's overarching goal was to improve access to WASH services for all, especially targeting marginalised communities, including those in urban slums and remote areas. It used an integrated approach, aiming for sustainable, climate-resilient, gender sensitive, and socially inclusive water and sanitation services with improved hygiene practices.

Consortium members

The consortium led by Simavi consisted of

  • the Dutch partners of the WASH Alliance International (WAI) including Amref Flyring Doctors, Akvo, RAIN Foundation, WASTE, IRC, Wetlands International, Practica Foundation, RUAF (Hivos)
  • SNV Netherlands
  • Plan Netherlands

Updates and contact

  • Simavi has been the overall lead of the WASH SDG consortium
  • Visit the project site

About the programme in Bangladesh

In Bangladesh, the programme was divided into two sub-programmes implemented by the WASH Alliance International (WAI) and SNV. WAI targeted twenty Unions and seven Municipalities in its sub-programme. The twenty Unions are spread over five subdistricts: Barguna Sadar, Satkhira Sadar, Tala, Betagi and Sreemangal. The Municipalities are Satkhira, Kalaroa, Barguna, Amtali, Betagi, Patharghata and Kalapara. The WAI sub-programme was implemented by consortium members from Bangladesh and the Netherlands.

In-country partners WASH Alliance Bangladesh:

  • Development Organisation for the Rural Poor (DORP)
  • Hope for the Poorest (HP)
  • Stichting Landontwikkelingsproject Bangladesh (SLOPB)
  • Practical Action (PA)
  • WaterAid Bangladesh-WAB (and its partner IDEA,
  • Uttaran Bangladesh(and its partner Dalit)

About the programme in Ethiopia

In Ethiopia the WASH SDG programme programme has been implemented via two-sub programmes, implemented by the WASH Alliance International and Plan. The four focus woredas in two regions. In Oromia region, Negelle Arsi and Shashamane. And in Bahir Dar, Zuria, and Lasta Lalibela woredas.

The implementation of the WASH SDG Ethiopia programme has demonstrated substantial progress and key achievements in addressing WASH challenges in the selected woredas in Ethiopia. These achievements include demand for improved WASH facilities and practices, enhancing WASH service provision, and improving WASH governance and institutional frameworks. The collaborative efforts of stakeholders, including government bodies, community members, and various organizations, have been pivotal in driving these achievements. Key learnings have emerged, emphasizing the crucial role of community engagement, strategic dissemination of information, and capacity building initiatives in empowering stakeholders and fostering collective action. It is evident that strong collaboration, detailed planning, and evidence-based advocacy play a critical role in ensuring the sustainability and long-term impact of these initiatives.

In-country partners Ethiopia

  • Amref Health Africa
  • Bole Bible Baptist Church (BBBC)


IRC's contribution to the project

IRC brought in its systems strengthening expertise, and has worked with government staff and partners to increase the awareness on the need for a strong national and local WASH systems, bringing in proven tools and approaches.

Key experts involved on behalf of IRC:

Sustainability checks

  • Richard Ward
  • Erick Baetings

Learning and Knowledge Development

  • Richard Ward
  • Erick Baetings
  • Rene van Lieshout
  • Arjen Naafs
  • Vera van der Grift


  • Digbijoy Dey, Sanitation specialist
  • Sk. Towhidur Rahaman
  • Erick Baetings, Sanitation specialist


  • Lemessa Mekonta
  • Gezahegn Lemecha Boru
  • Betelhem Hailegiorgis
  • Muhammed Ebrahim Mussa
  • Tsegaye Ysehiwas Hailu


  • Martin Watsisi, Regional WASH Advisor
  • Moses Asiimwe
  • Noami Kabarungi

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