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SWELL Securing Water to Enhance Local Livelihood. Association for Water And Rural Development. SWELL Securing Water to Enhance Local Livelihood. Intro to SWELL.

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Swell securing water to enhance local livelihood
SWELL Securing Water to Enhance Local Livelihood

Association for Water And Rural Development

Swell securing water to enhance local livelihood1
SWELL Securing Water to Enhance Local Livelihood

Intro to SWELL

SWELL is a CBP process that enable villagers, in partnership with relevant stakeholders, to design plans for improving their village water system, based on a critical analysis and understanding of their water related problems, needs and opportunities in their specific livelihood context.

Piloted in ward 16 of Bushbuckridge LM

Swell securing water to enhance local livelihood2
SWELL Securing Water to Enhance Local Livelihood


  • A different idea about village water supply in villagers’ livelihood - ‘’An integrated and holistic approach to water supply and water management’’.

  • These Multiple Use Systems are required to fulfill villagers’ multiple livelihood strategies around water.

  • Need for an approach that considers livelihoods into Municipal planning processes (such as IDP)

Swell securing water to enhance local livelihood3
SWELL Securing Water to Enhance Local Livelihood


  • The poorest and most vulnerable people

  • Villagers as key actors of Swell

  • Integrated approach towards water management

  • Empowerment and capacity building

  • Link with Municipal planning procedures




- Preparatory meetings with stakeholders

- Training of field team for Assessment




- Qualitative and quantitative assessment of

overall water situation

- Identification of needs and opportunities to

improve the village water systems







- Design projects proposals based on assessment


- Seeking for partnership with implementers

Inclusion of

projects in IDP

- Screening of project proposals

- Drafting of integrated programs

- Implementation of projects

- Monitoring by villagers and Ward committees


Water and livelihood security assessment
Water and Livelihood Security Assessment

Framework and methods

Water services assessment at village level :

The study of water services (for multiple uses) focus on 4 interrelated parts:

Various methods are used, including transect walk, time line, focus group discussions etc

RIDE Framework:

Water Resources availability

Water Infrastructure status

Water Demand review

Management activities

(Water allocation, Operation & Maintenance…)

Water and livelihood security assessment1
Water and Livelihood Security Assessment


Water & LivelihoodAssessment at Household level:

Analysis of people’s livelihood in relation to water services

Our livelihood approach focuses on:

- Water and income generating activities

- Water and food production activities

- Awareness on policies, technologies

- Water uses and services (gender perspective)

Method: Household interviews and survey

 This will help in defining scenarios for improving water services taking into account the local livelihood context.

Water and livelihood security assessment2
Water and Livelihood Security Assessment


Problem Focused Assessment at village level (Village synthesis)

  • Research feedback on assessment a village and household level.

  • Collective analysis of problems (and causes) to access water for domestic and productive uses and identifying the needs for awareness raising.

  • Method: problem identification, prioritization, problem statement writing, identification of possible solutions

Ward synthesis planning for water
Ward Synthesis – Planning for Water

  • Ward Synthesis objective:

To develop plans for the improvement of water services and ensure the inclusion of these plans in the IDP process

  • Ward Synthesis process:

  • Get stakeholders from different levels and sectors to analyse problems leading to water insecurity

  • Identify possible and practical solutions within the mandate of each stakeholders

  • Integration of these solutions into sector plans

Experiences from bushbuckridge
Experiences from Bushbuckridge

  • First pilot in 1 village in 2003

  • Adaptation of methodology into ward level planning approach

  • Tested in 7 villages of ward 16 of Bushbuckridge in 2004/2005

  • Plans developed and integrated into IDP and sector plans

  • Multi-stakeholder platform established to monitor progress of plans

Experiences from bushbuckridge1
Experiences from Bushbuckridge

Findings at household level

  • About half the interviewed households have water-related income-generating activities

  • Great variability between the villages

  • Low contribution to overall income; most comes from social grants or remittances

  • Staple food production mostly rainfed, or bought

  • Poorest families either grow nutritious crops (vegetables) in backyard gardens or don’t have access to those at all

Experiences from bushbuckridge2
Experiences from Bushbuckridge

Findings at household level

  • Water security is currently one of the limiting factor for backyard gardens and other productive uses

  • But, not the only limitation; also time, fencing, skills, access to credit, etc

  • Water security is closely related to technology at household level and village water service performance

  • Little awareness on alternatives such as rainwater harvesting

Experiences from bushbuckridge3
Experiences from Bushbuckridge

Findings at village level

  • Unreliable functioning of water services

  • No community management in place; still DWAF operators

  • For most uses people rely on piped water; only for cattle dams are used

  • Little communication between different stakeholders

  • No payment for water; no FBW; “free water”

  • Payment to private water vendors when services are broken down

Experiences from bushbuckridge4
Experiences from Bushbuckridge

Example of problem statement:

  • “Most of villagers in Delani have backyard gardens (and a community garden) but all lack a proper infrastructure to be irrigated. This translates into underutilized opportunities for food security”

  • This has been taken to the ward synthesis leading to a problem tree:



Strategy development
Strategy development

6 strategies were defined

  • Investing in water storage infrastructure for multiple uses

  • Investing in rain water harvesting technology for multiple uses

  • Create technical and institutional capacity for maintenance and repair

  • Define responsibility, accountability and communication between all actors

  • Developing awareness on water resources and infrastructure

  • Ensure emergency supply for water

Lessons learnt
Lessons learnt

  • Many of the water-related problems are linked, requiring an integrated approach

  • Addressing domestic water supply without considering multiple uses leads to unsustainable services

  • A learning approach is needed to get stakeholders to plan water services in an integrated way

  • Such process requires structured facilitation and a clear methodology

Looking forward
Looking forward

  • Need to build upon SWELL for a methodology for monitoring by the multi-stakeholder platform

  • SWELL was meant to be for planning; now move towards implementation and monitoring?

  • Interest from other areas/organisation in SWELL (e.g. Sekororo in Maruleng LM; CARE South Africa and Lesotho; MUS project in Zimbabwe)