Award for exceptional endeavors in helping provide

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Award for exceptional endeavors in helping provide homes, employment prospects and bringing new hope to countless Palestinian families. This submission demonstrates cooperation at its best between the local community, local NGOs, regional and international organizations, and financial institutions. The results of this synergism lead to housing for the needy and job creation in Palestinian occupied territories. Soft loans given to the beneficiaries have been efficiently recycled to alleviate the tough living conditions of even more people. The Water and Sanitation Extension Program (WASEP), initiated in 1997 by the Aga Khan Planning and Building Services, Pakistan (AKPBSP), aims at providing infrastructure services. Specific program objectives focus on improving environmental health of local communities through provision of safe water and sanitation facilities to local communities in Northern Pakistan and Sindh. These includes reducing water collection time, particularly for women and children in mountainous areas; sustaining community water supply and sanitation infrastructure; reducing child morbidity caused by water-borne diseases, ultimately reducing health expenses burden of poorer communities. Main objectives are to 1) Design, install, and ensure appropriate use of water supply, excreta disposal and drainage infrastructure; 2) Train local organizations to operate and maintain the infrastructure over its design life; 3) Encourage positive changes in hygiene behaviour; 4) Improve quality of life for women and children; and 5) Increase women’s participation in community decision-making. These objectives were established through village level consultations with both men and women community members. WASEP’s integrated intervention package includes 1) community mobilization and participation; 2) potable water supply infrastructure; 3) water quality management; 4) gray water drainage infrastructure; 5) household sanitation infrastructure; and 6) health and hygiene education. As part of the Terms of Partnership, the community takes the responsibility for operation and maintenance of the scheme once the infrastructure is
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installed, and contributes towards a cash fund. WASEP’s approach therefore, not only provides physical infrastructure, but also promotes sanitation and environmental health practices, while ensuring long-term sustainability of the infrastructure. WASEP adopts a process that integrates Participatory Rural Appraisals (PRAs), water supply schemes, excreta disposal schemes, drainage, health and hygiene education, as well as community management aspects. PRAs are used as a basic community needs identification tool for participation and commitment. In the water supply schemes, men and women are involved in the planning and design phase in all technical assessments.
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