Multi-Stakeholder Collaboration Reduces Non-Revenue Water in Uganda
From 2014 through 2016, the USAID/Kenya and East Africa’s Planning for Resilience in East Africa through Policy, Adaptation, Research and Economic Development (PREPARED) Project used a collaborative, learning and adapting (CLA) approach to improve access to water in Uganda. The Project supported The Uganda National Water and Sewerage Corporation (NWSC) in the cities of Jinja and Iganga’s apply an integrated approach to improve services and reduce non-revenue water by improving utility operations, engaging customers in service delivery programs, and providing smart metering and information technology solutions. PREPARED introduced and facilitated a Quality Services Improvement Program (QSIP) with the Jinja/Iganga NWSC offices. This five-step program provides staff with tools to conduct a service audit, develop visions for improved service delivery, conduct customer feedback surveys, prepare service principles and implement strategies for departmental and operational improvements. NWSC’s success at reducing NRW in a relatively short period of time demonstrates the power of an integrated CLA approach that combines organizational culture change, outreach to and engagement of customers in solving problems and improving service quality, and the use of innovative and creative technological tools. NWSC Jinja and Iganga has become a model for Uganda, the region, and the rest of Africa and the utility has hosted numerous delegations in the last year. The use of QSIP, coordinated with a government – endorsed customer engagement approach, and the introduction of smart – metering by an innovative engineering company resulted in globally significant reductions in NRW levels in Jinja and Iganga.