Integrated Village Improvement Project
Tajikistan, one of the poorest of the former Soviet republics, borders the north-eastern provinces of Afghanistan, suffering from conflict-induced displacement, both of which are in desperate need of humanitarian assistance.
Many Tajik and Afghan communities along the border currently have no piped water supply system, retrieve their drinking water from polluted mountain streams, pons and ditches, and lack sufficient latrine access, making open defecation the norm. Geographically, the communities are situated in a mountainous environment, increasing their vulnerability to disaster risks such as floods, mudflows, landslides and avalanches, not only causing fatalities, but also damaging the affected communities’ livelihoods.
As a result of these poor conditions, both the Tajik and Afghan communities suffer from high rates of water-borne diseases, which leads to high infant and maternal death rates; reduced household productivity due to illness and cost of treatment; and, reduced development due to time spent on water collection, especially for girls and women.
This project will allow local Afghan and Tajik communities to discover their self-help potential to reduce their vulnerability and build resilience, against the effects of illness and natural hazards. The project will also contribute, on a regional level, to promoting and enhancing cross-border cooperation and exchange around shared interests.
This project focuses on establishing community-based WASH and Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) programmes to address the root causes of water-borne diseases and disaster risk.
Specifically, the project focuses on improving the quality of life of the selected communities through the provision of safe drinking water, appropriate sanitation facilities, and increased disaster resilience.
Focusing both on the community level and the household level, this project will improve hygiene and sanitation practices, improve disaster preparedness and response capacities, and improve cross-border exchange and transfer of knowledge between the Tajik and Afghan communities.
Mission East is conducting several activities in Tajik and Afghan communities to support their increased capacity. Working together with our staff in Afghanistan, exchange visits will be carried out to facilitate cross-border transfer of knowledge and practice regarding WASH and DRR.
To improve the access to safe drinking water, Mission East, with the support of the local people, is constructing village water systems, and training them on maintenance of the constructed infrastructure.
To improve sanitation and hygiene, Mission East is constructing household and public latrines, and training the communities on hygiene knowledge, attitudes and practices.
By conducting village hazard risk assessments and developing disaster management plans, Mission East will support small and medium scale disaster mitigation works to increase the disaster resilience of the Tajik and Afghan communities.