Kevin in Liberia

Its Purpose: to raise awareness of current social, political, ethical, and spiritual issues within a relief and development context in Liberia. Its effectiveness is simple: It relies on me, the author, to provide insightful, and often debate-sparking material that will encourage you, the reader to get engaged through comment contributions, emails, and promoting others to read, re-think, and respond to the important issues discussed.

I know not which is most profitable to me, health or sickness, wealth or poverty, nor anything else in the world. That discernment is beyond the power of men or angels, and is hidden among the secrets of your Providence, which I adore, but do not seek to fathom. ~ a prayer by Blaise Pascal

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Improving Access to Water and Sanitation in Liberia

Many rural and urban residents in Liberia lack access to safe drinking water and improved sanitation in their communities. According to the 2006 Comprehensive Food Security and Nutrition Survey, although water is abundant in Liberia, only 32% of all households surveyed had access to safe drinking water. The Survey also found that less than a quarter of the households surveyed had access to an improved sanitary facility, usually a public pit latrine. In areas that were worst affected by the civil crisis, and in others where road access is difficult, residents struggle to get safe drinking water, and are constrained to drink water from creeks and streams. The Government of Liberia concludes that ‘water, sewerage and treatment facilities are out of operation, except for a limited supply of water in parts of Monrovia, and that garbage collection ranges from minimal to non-existent’ (Interim Poverty Reduction Strategy – final draft). During the rainy season, poor water and sanitation and hygienic practices contribute to an increase in cholera and other water-borne diseases.

More than 95 international and local NGOs and UN agencies are engaged in providing water and sanitation facilities in the country. The interventions include borehole drilling, shallow well rehabilitation/construction, family, institutional and communal latrine construction/rehabilitation, hygiene promotion, response to disease outbreaks and emergencies, and capacity building (training). As of November 2006 over 1,000 wells fitted with hand pumps and 350 latrines have either been constructed or rehabilitated. However, due to inadequate reporting by agencies, it is believed the actual number of water and sanitary facilities constructed or rehabilitated in 2006 may be higher. Hygiene promotion is maintained alongside construction or rehabilitation activities. The WATSAN Cluster led by UNICEF and three Government line ministries coordinate activities of agencies involved in water and sanitation (WATSAN) at the national level. At the county level, coordination is done through sector working groups. The Government of Liberia is reviewing plans to take over coordination of Cluster activities. Coordination activities include monthly Cluster and sector meetings, joint assessments and monitoring, coordinated response to emergencies and other needs, and maintenance of activities database.

The Government of Liberia has set a target of providing nine water treatment facilities in fifteen counties of Liberia to provide safe drinking water to residents by June 2008. The long-term targets set for the Millennium Development Goals for Liberia seek to provide coverage of 63% for both improved water supply and sanitation for all residents. In line with Government’s objective of ‘increasing safe drinking water and improved sanitation for all in both urban and rural areas’ the WATSAN Cluster has set out its priorities for assistance in 2007 to include participatory community hygiene promotion in cholera hot spots, construction of new facilities and rehabilitation of old facilities in areas of relative low coverage (Lofa, Grand Kru, River Gee, Sinoe, Rivercess and Gbarpolu Counties), and integration of mechanisms for maintenance of all WATSAN facilities, improving urban water supply in main towns, rapid emergency response and information management capacity building of local NGOs, and update of WATSAN information systems. Overall, a concerted effort to coordinate and monitor agencies’ activities is crucial to avoid duplication, ensure efficient use of resources and steer agencies’ activities in line with the Government priorities.

Courtesy of UNMIL Coordination Section (HCS)
November 2 - December 3, 2006

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  • At 5:51 AM, Anonymous Debbie ~ said…

    Hi Kevin,I must confess that my knowledge and awarenesses of the plight of the African people has been almost nil. Thank you for providing this avenue of information to those like myself.Upon reading the info re: water and sanitation etc I was left asking myself how I as one person,could help. Are you able to provide the costs for such endeavors and an avenue for donations for those as ignorant as myself?
    As to your blog notes Dec 4th I recently watched an Oprah show, where I first heard about the "Blood Diamonds." I have since read up on the Kimberly Process which I found at
    Thank you for the work you do and for reaching one more person who needs to spread the urgency for aid, now that I have the awareness of how much the help is needed. God Bless !
    PS Dad says hi...He is back in the Interior and I was just on the phone with him reading your latest updates to him.

  • At 7:18 AM, Anonymous Debbie~ said…

    Ephesians 4:1-4

  • At 8:14 AM, Anonymous Debbie~ said…

    Copy of email sent to friends. family, and affiliated organizations.
    Subject: Please check out in detail

    Let's all do something! Can you sway 10.00 dollars off your Christmas list? I will personally see to it, that each donation of at 'least' 10.00 goes to Africa to help this cause. Can you truly sleep after knowing more about the plight of our African friends.

    I know Kevin Fryatt personally, and will see that all donations make it to Liberia. It starts with one person and one dollar.

    Please give,as this is an urgent need after the civil war that has almost destroyed the will and spirit of Africa.

    You may have a charity and organization of your choice that you regularly donate to. I ask you to with-hold one dollar of your usual donation, to the plight of Africans who do not even know the luxury of clean, sanitized water. All donations will be provided with a receipt for income tax purposes.
    Please...this starts with grows with all of us !

    Check out Kevin's blog at
    And to learn and educate yourselves a bit more:

    Thank you all,

    They need our help... NOW!

    Together we CAN make a difference.

    Send all donations payable by cheque and/or money order to

  • At 10:33 PM, Blogger Kevin Aja Fryatt said…

    Hi Debbie,

    Way to be proactive on wanting to make a difference! Let me know how it goes.



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