September 14, 2015 / Glen Reynolds

Whether in camps or or the move, people need water to live and carry on. As people migrate, here is a useful and thought provoking list as to what is essential for desperate people

1. Adequacy and equity of water distributed: Sufficient supply for basic needs for each and every person throughout the camp, including in school and health units.
2. Acceptability and safety of water supplied: Potable and palatable in terms of appearance, taste and odour. Water quality is monitored regularly for faecal contamination and water safety plans are in place
3. Social costs (burden) on the users: Facilities located centrally and not too far from the dwellings, with minimum waiting time, and safe and user-friendly designs.
4. Physical safety of the users: Facilities located in a secure physical environment; water distribution time and duration planned according to users convenience and cultural habits, and limited to day-light hours.
5. Reliability of supply: There needs to be continuous maintenance of the water supply system as well as adequate water storage at the family and community level in case of interruptions.
6. Environmental concerns/hazards: Sustainable exploitation of water sources, waste water management, improved drainage for storm water to avoid water-induced hazards etc.
7. Efficiency of supply: Avoiding water wastage during fetching from tapstands and other system losses.
8. Participation of stakeholders: Refugees and other sectors (health, physical planner, sanitation) involved in water system development and operation as well as maintaining a good rapport with the host community

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