Sanitation in Guatemala. Photo: LatinoSan 2013
Delegates attending LatinoSan 2013 have agreed to set up a Latin-American and Caribbean Observatory on Sanitation. The observatory will monitor progress on sanitation in those countries that have signed up to the LatinoSan initiative. Sub-regional and national sanitation scorecards are already available online.
There will also be a Regional Meeting of Ministries of Sanitation every 2 years.
These are two of the commitments written up in the Panama Declaration at the conclusion of the 3rd Latin American and Caribbean Sanitation Conference, LatinoSan 2013. The conference took place in Panama City from 29 to 31 May 2013.
Vivienda minister Germán Vargas Lleras and Bucaramanga state water utility (AMB) general manager Ludwig Stünkel García at a public event. Photo: Julián Sabogal. MVCT
The Acueducto Metropolitano de Bucaramanga (AMB) is now the 5th certified public utility sanctioned by the Colombian government to approve water and sanitation projects.
In a press release the housing, cities and land ministry (MVCT) said new legislation approved in 2012 had made this delegation of powers to municipal water utilities. The ministry said this cuts red tape so that projects can be approved faster.
Previous certified public water utilities were Aguas de Cartagena, Empopasto, Aguas de Manizales and Empresas Públicas de Armenia.
Source: MVCT [in Spanish], 06 Dec 2012 ; BNamericas.com / WaterWorld.com, 06 Dec 2012
Water supply in Cuchumuela. Photo: José Rocha, Los Tiempos
Villa Gualberto Villarroel, better known as Cuchumuela, is the first municipality in Bolivia to achieve 100 percent water coverage. Official recognition for their achievement came from Bolivia’s water and environment ministry MMAyA. It is the story of a successful partnership between local government, communities and an international NGO, Water for People.
According to Mayor Oscar Terrazas, the foundation for achieving water for all 2,000 inhabitants of Cuchumuela was laid in 1996 when Bolivia passed the law on popular participation (Ley de Participación Popular). This gave local government and communities the power to set their own priorities for local services. Each of the 15 autonomous communities in Cuchumuela is responsible for the financial management and maintenance of their fully metered water system.
NGO “Give to Colombia” will implement several pilot projects that will serve as models for the Rural Water Supply and Wastewater Management Program in Colombia. This large-scale programme is financed with the help of a US$ 60 million loan from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).
The pilot projects have four components:
- School water, sanitation and hygiene promotion (SWASH), which will implement and evaluate UNICEF’s model for SWASH interventions in at least 25 rural public schools
- Post-construction support and the sustainability of rural water projects with a focus on innovative financial models
- Sustainable models for the financing and provision of household connections
- Sustainable self-supply models for disperse rural communities
The AquaFund and Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction are financing the pilot projects. Contributors to the Aquafund are IDB, the governments of Switzerland and Austria, and the PepsiCo Foundation.
The pilot projects will cost about US$ 2.1 million. The implementing agency Give to Colombia (G2C) receives resources from the Embassy of Japan and the General Electric Foundation. PepsiCo Colombia is supporting the dissemination of the innovative models being developed in the projects.
In 2011, IRC International Water and Sanitation Centre and CINARA carried out a study on behalf of IDB, about post-construction support on rural water supply services in Colombia . The study  shows that those service providers that receive more structured support perform better.
 IADB publishes report on post-construction support on rural water supply services in Colombia, IRC, 21 Aug 2012 ; Webinar – Impacts of post-construction support on the performance of rural water supply in Colombia, IRC,
 Smits, S. et al., 2012. Gobernanza y sostenibilidad de los sistemas de agua potable y saneamiento rurales en Colombia. (Monografia; IDB-MG-133). [online] Washington, DC, USA: Inter-American Development Bank. Available at: <
Source: Latin American Herald Tribune, 10 Oct 2012 ; IDB, 02 Oct 2012
Posted in Colombia, Financing, Publications, Rural WASH, School sanitation, Sustainable services
Tagged Aquafund, Give to Colombia, Inter-American Development Bank, IRC International Water and Sanitation Centre, post-construction support, source_publish