Final Evaluation USAID/Burkina Faso Rural Water Supply Project
A 7-person, interdisciplinary team conducted a final evaluation of A.I.D.'s Rural Water Supply Project in Burkina Faso, which lasted from 1980 to 1986; emphasis is on the 1984-86 extension period. The project reached most of its objectives and may generally be considered a success. Its construction of 678 wells has significantly increased the availability of water; project continuation is recommended so that remaining water needs may be met. The success ratio in constructing wells with acceptable yields improved over time, exceeding 90% for both drilled and hand-dug wells during the last campaign. The Moyno pump employed by the project has been moderately successful in avoiding breakdowns; however, comparative tests indicate that other pumps may be more suitable to Burkinabe conditions. The project's greatest failure was undoubtedly the lack of a functioning system to maintain the pumps. A new, innovative maintenance system which relies on the private sector has recently been formed, but is not yet in operation. Periodic evaluation of the maintenance system is recommended. While the project's combination of a water component with a health component was innovative, the two components have not proceeded in tandem, the latter having been operational only for the last 2 years. Interministerial coordination improved markedly during the extension period with the naming of a technical coordination committee composed of two technical directors and a team leader from Dimpex, the technical assistance contractor. The addition of a national director to oversee all project operations is recommended. A random survey found that sanitary storing and use of water was not common among villagers. Distance to the water point, irrespective of water quality, continued to be the overriding factor determining water use. Within a pilot zone established to test an integrated water and health approach, results were somewhat better. In the future, health education and village extension (animation) should precede well construction. Unit costs of well construction were rather high; future projects should utilize the private sector for drilling wells. Efficiency could also be improved if wages were based on production. The management systems established by the project are appropriate and constitute a model for other development projects of this kind; more attention should be given to their application, however. (Author abstract, modified).