The African Water Facility and Water and Sanitation Department Director, Osward Chanda met, on April 27 in Abidjan, with Global Affairs Canada’s Director General for Pan-African Affairs, Tarik Khan to discuss strategic areas of support to the Africa Water Facility from Canada which has been a long time donor to the facility.
The priority areas for Canadian focus areas in the water sector includes funding of investment that promotes Canadian private sector participation with their technological advances. During the discourse it was emphasized that the support to the AWF prioritize and demonstrate strong climate change adaptation and gender mainstreaming.
The communication of past Canadian support to clearly indicate the impact of the projects that have been supported and their contribution to the downstream investments and the impact these investments have had in women and youth empowerment in WASH programs and policies.
Khan advised that the storyline must clearly flow from the value of Canadian support in project preparation to the leveraged upscaling of investments and the population impacted.
Chanda intimated that the Facility has a rare advantaged position of influencing the project design from the studies and hence can ensure climate change resilience smart technologies are adopted. The youth empowerment in all water projects with consistently inclusion of graduates as interns to gain the much needed experience and exposes them to the sector to help build interest.
The other participants to the meeting were Nalan Yuksel, Head of Cooperation for the Pan-African and Regional Development Programming in Addis Ethiopia, Euloge Camara, Trade commissioner/climate finance based in Abidjan, Eve Sandra Beremwoudougou, First Secretary (Pan-Africa & Regional development) based in Abidjan and Samuel Blazyk, Chief Program and coordination officer at the AWF.
Canada was one of the largest contributors to the AWF special fund with more than 26 million euros between 2006 and 2017.
In this context, the Canadian representatives reiterated their interest in the work of the African Water Facility and agreed to participate in the next AWF informal donor group meeting which will take place in June 2022.
It gives the donors an opportunity to have some indepth understanding of the technical aspects of the facility but also to share their experiences and knowledge to the benefit of the facility.