International collaborates with partners, government leaders and the private sector to help the national governments meet their water, sanitation and hygiene targets, under the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. We specifically focus on Goal 6.1, which calls for providing equitable access to an adequate amount of safe and affordable drinking water of sufficient quality for all people by 2030 as well as Goal 6.2 which calls for ending open defecation and providing adequate, equitable, and safely managed sanitation for all people by 2030. We also focus on Goal 6.5 to implement integrated water resources management at all levels, as well as Goal 6.b to support local engagement in water and sanitation management. In our programmes, we pay special attention to the needs of women, girls and the vulnerable.
We focus our efforts on Sub-Saharan Africa which has borne the biggest brunt of inadequate water and sanitation globally. Thanks to the support of our donors, over the years, millions of beneficiaries in the region have gained access to clean water.
Resolution of local water security problems requires a lean, flexible, environment and social-context driven approach to water management and shift away from top-down, supply-driven and centralised approaches, such as large-scale water infrastructure.
We support local leaders and regional authorities' engagement in water and sanitation management, as well as strengthening the participation of local communities in the decision-making process. Allowing in the specialised knowledge and great diversity of viewpoints not only encourages more open, inclusive, democratic and localized solutions but also has a potential to reduce the risk of conflicts over water resources, generating wider support hence leading to more sustainable outcomes. In areas without electricity, a hand pump becomes both an energy-efficient and durable alternative to water provision. We have also worked with solar water pumping which proved more sustainable and comparatively cost-effective with less maintenance work. Supporting local engagement is where LM International believes we have a comparative advantage of established long-term partnerships and can catalyze the biggest change.
Providing equitable access to safe and affordable drinking water and ending open defecation are our top priorities within the water, sanitation, and hygiene. In 2020 alone, 217 functioning water sources were constructed or restored, bringing access to clean water to more than 180,000 people, 17,000 households benefited from installing an improved latrine, and nearly 720,000 people were sensitized on improved hygiene and sanitation. Construction of 4,000 custom-made latrines for people with disabilities is particularly satisfying, as it makes a tremendous difference to the individuals who have access to them.
Existing resources are secured in order to provide optimum benefit to as many people as possible and to prioritise ecological sustainability and ecosystem protection. Part of our work includes well drilling, renovation of existing boreholes, as well as pump installation and maintenance. Appropriate drilling sites are identified, validated for depth, water quality and long-term functioning, followed by installation of pumps and accessories. The training component tailored for local community and regional authorities in repair and maintenance of the pump is key sustaining the results beyond programme completion.
We also have a solid track record of working in sustainable sanitation and hygiene behavior change implementing proven approaches such as CLTS.
We believe that our long-standing efforts in water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) over the course of the years will translate to improved health, increased stability and reduced poverty within the beneficiary communities.
Our performance is measured through technical evaluation and functionality of the completed infrastructure, as well as quantitative and qualitative data. Examples of collected technical data may include technical reports from the drilling teams, geological and geographical data, water quality, baseline and endline surveys with the local communities on quality of life, distance from the water source measurements, as well as statistical data on potential health improvements from the local clinics and hospitals, whenever available. The data is then summarized and consolidated by the administrators for further reporting, analysis and sharing with the local, regional, national authorities and other relevant stakeholders/stakeholder groups.