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The aqueduct goes to the village


ico acqua internaposa tubiAccess to drinking water in the district of Njombe and the Iringa Region, Tanzania



Tanzania, Iringa Region, Njombe Region



From October 2009 until November 2012



In the region of Iringa only 54% of the population has access to safe drinking water supplies. Surface wells are the most common solution for water supply but the quantity and the quality of the water of these sources is poor. Giving continuity to a program initiated by ACRA in September 2006, thanks to the co-financing of the EU as part of the Water Facility Initiative, this project has extended the aqueduct, initially built in Tove, to five other villages previously not served by drinking water. Access to water is also guaranteed to other centers of the District through the connection of existing deep wells to the aqueduct. Because the benefits of the availability of water is optimized only if related to a general improvement of health conditions, ACRA has also improved sanitation and has organized courses to create awareness among the communities on the importance of hygiene.



To ensure the sustainable access to safe drinking water in the District of Njombe and to invest in local capability building in order to ensure the replicability of such hydraulic interventions in Tanzania.




  • A total of 226 public drinking fountains were constructed also thanks to the voluntary contribution of the community. Access to water is now guaranteed to over 20,269 new users, about 15% more than expected because during the third year the works were extended to include the village of Ilunda (2,700 users). Five new tanks were built and two rehabilitated.
  • Four deep wells were constructed: two in the village of Uhenga with the installation of hand pumps (rope pump), one in the village of Makondo with a pumping system generator, and one in the village of Idenyemembe also with a pumping system generator.
  • The WUA (Water Users Association) runs the aqueduct sustainably. The WUA owns seventy hectares of land planted with pine trees, which will provide a large capital revenue in 15-20 years. The collection rate of the monthly fee is around 90%. The villages represented in the WUA at the end of the project are sixteen.
  • More than 1,120 improved latrines (models VIDP, SLAB and multi-pit latrines for schools) have been completed of which 1,008 are family latrines and seven are multi-pit latrines built in five primary schools, and implemented according to the new national SWAH guidelines.
  • 20% of the population was made aware of hygiene and sanitation and the proper use of water, including the students of the twenty-three primary schools in the area (about 8,000 students).
  • A study on the regional water quality was carried out in cooperation with regional authorities and UN-Habitat; the study was presented at the World Water Week 2011 in Stockholm. A total of eight districts were mapped including urban and peri-urban areas. In collaboration with the Ministry of Water a study to analyze the results of the WPM (Water Point Mapping) at the regional level was carried out in collaboration with SNV and Daraja (VIP survey - Validation and Inquiry Process). GPS systems of high quality were given to the respective districts in order to update the WPM.
  • At least two technicians for each district were trained in the use of GIS technologies as well as the staff of three local NGOs: IDYDC, SHIPO and INCOMET.



Direct beneficiaries:

  • Approximately 43,000 people living in fourteen villages connected to the water supply and that, therefore, have access to safe drinking water.

These figures relate to two phases of the program started in 2006 by the co-financing of the European Commission and later extended to other villages thanks to the co-financing of the Italian Cooperation.


  • More than 24,000 people (including 8,000 students) have been made aware of hygiene and the correct use of water.

Indirect beneficiaries:

The population of the Region of Iringa for an estimated total of 1,490,892 people.




The principles of sustainability and replicability are at the basis of the intervention, which is part of a larger program started in 2006 and that will continue thanks to new funding to ensure better hygienic conditions for the inhabitants of the region. The creation of a Water Users Association is the key to ensure the constant maintenance of the aqueduct and therefore the constant supply of drinking water to the population and it is also a guarantee for the financial and social sustainability of the project: it is the responsibility of the users to pay the monthly fee for the maintenance and management of the service. At the end of 2012, the WUA had registered a budget surplus with the prospect of a capital increase.



Total value:


2,723,336 €

Principal founder:



  • Movimento Africa 70
  • SHIPO - Southern Highlands Participatory Organization
  • N.D.O. - Njombe Development Office (Catholic Diocese of Njombe)


Other institutions involved:

  • Regional Hydro-Geological Department of Iringa
  • Regional Hydraulic Department of Iringa
  • INCOMET – NGO of Mafinga
  • IDYDC - (Iringa Development of Youth, Disabled and Children Care)
  • District of N'jombe


Beyond the project

>>> Discover the social enterprise Water User Association
>>> Watch the video of the inauguration of the aqueduct