The WASHCost team is gathering information related to the true costs of providing water, sanitation, and hygiene services for the entire life-cycle of a service - from implementation all the way to service delivery. This website shares general information about WASHCost. The WASHCost Calculator is an online tool for exploring the costs of water and sanitation. Read more about the calculator on the WASHCost blog.
WASHCost started as a five-year action research programme, which ran from 2008 to 2012. During that programme, IRC International Water and Sanitation Centre worked with several partners to collect data in the rural and peri-urban areas of Burkina Faso, Ghana, India, and Mozambique and develop new life-cycle costing and service evaluation methodologies.
Welcome to the September edition of our eUpdate! We begin this issue by introducing IRC's new director Patrick Moriarty. He has pioneered the IRC’s research and development work on building sustainable WASH services. At the Stockholm World Water Week, Patrick sent out a call for collective action with government to embed a ‘whole-systems approach’ – where all aspects of running a service are taken into account, including how to sustain its life cost not just capital expenditure. This latest issue is full of news supporting this call for action.
WASHCost - a US$ 14.5m, five-year project funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and implemented by the IRC International Water and Sanitation Centre (IRC) - has been a bold, global attempt to gain accurate knowledge on disaggregated water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) costs in rural and peri-urban areas. This independent End-of-Project assessment, commissioned by IRC, reflects on the lessons learnt from the project.
Interested to know how WASHCost has dealt with the issue of sustaining rural and peri-urban water, sanitation and hygiene services in Ghana, India, Mozambique and Burkina-Faso? Check out the four country films representing the work carried out by the WASHCost country teams; the twenty minute feature film looking deeper into the sustainability issues of rural and peri-urban water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) services or the animation explaining the different cost components and how to measure service levels.
The WASHCost film series have been developed by the WASHCost project team in collaboration with Lokaal Mondiaal.
In just a few short months, the beta-version of the WASHCost calculator will be available to users worldwide. Want to learn more about how this tool can be useful for your everyday WASH activities? Curious to know how the tool is incorporating user inputs? Read the article here.
Read how IRC’s work on the life-cycle cost study in Honduras is helping to identify strengths and weaknesses of FHIS information and knowledge management.
IRC International Water and Sanitation Centre’s WASHCost project has released an animation that has been created to help us understand how the life-cycle costs and the service delivered are connected. The life-cycle cost approach can be used to increase financial sustainability and to stop the cycle of failure of service delivery.
WASHCost in practice
This case study applies a a life-cycle costs approach (LCCA) to the sanitation and hygiene activities undertaken in Bagherpara Upazila, Jessore District, Bangladesh from 2006-2011, the duration of BRAC WASH-I programme. This was done to evaluate the sustainability of the sanitation and hygiene achievements over BRAC WASH I, demonstrate the type of results that can be delivered by an LCCA, and to explore ways in which life-cycle costing could be integrated in the BRAC WASH II programme.
WASHCost in practice
Coca-Cola’s Replenish Africa Initiative (RAIN) requires each project implementation plan to include a life-cycle budget section detailing the cost of annual operational expenditure, annual capital maintenance expenditure and direct support, aligned with the life cycle costing approach. Partners are also required to include the source where the funding for these costs are expected to be coming from.
This long-term budget is integral to designing a sustainable WASH program as it provides the community, local utility or other service provider a strategy to ensure the lasting service of the program. In considering the ongoing costs related to construction, maintenance, and upkeep, it is imperative to devise and implement a strategy to raise the funds to support such costs. The tools necessary to operate, maintain and support the project in the long-term must be considered and institutionalized from the start.
-The Coca-Cola Africa Foundation
The schedule for the “Costing Sustainable Services” online course for 2014 is now available. Starting from February, every other month 150 participants can start the course by registering online. Starting dates for the online course in 2014 and how to register can be found at: