NAWASSCO has a low income Consumer unit under the Commercial Department. The section is responsible for equity and sustainability of water and sanitation services in the low income areas.
The section is guided by a pro-poor policy and strategy that defines the operating parameters for their service delivery in Low Income Areas (LIAs). The policy explicitly outlines the rights and obligations of the utility, operator and those of the low income customers.
At the corporate level, NAWASSCO integrates the company’s vision, mission and core values into the pro poor policy and outlines all courses of action for pro-poor interventions and investments in the company’s Strategic Plan.
This anchorage of the pro poor policy has enabled NAWASSCO to remain focused on fulfillment of core mandates of increasing water and sanitation coverage, increasing revenue collection, reducing water and revenue losses Non Revenue Water (NRW) and improving relations with underserved consumers in LIAs.
It also guides the company to grow business in the bottom of the pyramid customer segment and aid business planning to ensure return on investment in LIAs.
Pro Poor Policy
The policy comprises of:
- Poverty index
- Water coverage
- Sanitation coverage
- Human rights, gender and social inclusion
- Adherence to statutory requirements
The medium and long-term objectives of the pro-poor policy are to:
- Significantly contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs); and thereafter
- Move to universal coverage responding to minimum standards by 2030 by giving access to the poor the highest priority on all levels.
Given the magnitude of the overall investment needs in the water sector, NAWASSCO will have to access a range of different funding opportunities to work towards achieving universal access. The main sources of funding for pro-poor interventions include:
As mandated under section 72(1) of the Water Act 2016, the Regulatory Board reserves the right to evaluate and recommend water and sewerage tariffs to the county water services providers and approve the imposition of such tariffs in line with consumer protection standards.
Water Sector Trust Fund
Under the Water Act 2016, the WSTF has the authority to provide conditional and unconditional grants to assist in financing the development and management of water services in underserved poor urban areas.
A water service provider intending to implement pro-poor strategies shall make a proposal of the intended interventions and present to the relevant county government for approval and funding through the Board of Directors of the company in which a representative of the county government must be present and acknowledged in the minutes of meeting of the Board meeting. The approved strategies shall be ratified by the BoDs and included in the company’s strategic plan.
d) Development partners
NAWASSCO has the liberty to source for additional funding from development partners with aligned interests towards the company’s pro-poor strategies.
The pro-poor unit has led to:
- Increased water and sanitation access and coverage
- Increased company revenue
- Reduction in water losses
- Improved relations with poor consumers
Improving access to safe water and sanitation services for communities and health facilities in the low income areas
NAWASSCO in conjunction with the Nakuru County Department of Health services and with funding from UNICEF and the Embassy of Sweden have been able to accomplish:
Access to Safe Water - 70,278 people in the low-income areas of Nakuru town have access to safe water at 25 liters per person/day from nine (9) new water kiosks, promotion of 800 water social connections and 15.5 water network extension.
Handwashing - 22,517 staff and patients per month practice safe hand washing with soap for 20 seconds in line with WHO guidelines for Covid-19 prevention in Thirteen (13) health facilities in the low-income areas of Nakuru town.
Covid-19 Prevention Messages - 131,434 people reached with critical Covid-19 prevention messages on safe hand washing with soap for 20 seconds in line with WHO guidelines, wearing face masks and social distancing.
Strengthened coordination - enhanced coordination of the Water Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) infection, prevention & control at county levels and community levels towards prevention and control of COVID-19 pandemic in the low-income areas of Nakuru County.