Influence of community participation on the performance of Kiserian Dam water project, Kajiado County, Kenya
In Kenya, ineffectiveness of project planning and management approaches have been the main impediments in improving water access in rural areas. The study is guided by the following objectives; i)To investigate how community participation in the identification of kiserian Dam water project influenced its performance ii)To examine how community participation in the planning of kiserian Dam water project influenced its performance iii) To assess how community participation in the implementation of kiserian Dam water project influenced its performance iv) To establish how community participation in monitoring and evaluation of kiserian dam water project influenced its performance. The study will inform policy makers and project managers of water projects to improve planning and implementation towards the goal of sustaining project benefits. Literature reviewed revealed that community participation influences project performance. The research incorporated descriptive design which enabled the researcher to collect both qualitative and quantitative data. The study focused on households as key stakeholders of water projects. Multi-stage Cluster sampling and purposive sampling techniques were employed to select the respondents for the study who comprised of household heads, government officials, area chief, project managers and the community leaders. Interview schedules, questionnaires, focus group discussions and reference books were used to collect data. The data was analyzed using descriptive statistics to generate mean, frequency tables and percentages. The research revealed a low level of community participation in the development of Kiserian Dam project. The overall level of community involvement demonstrated on a 5-range Likert Scale an average measure of 2.3 in their actual involvement and participation in Identification, Planning, Implementation and Monitoring of the Kiserian Dam project. The study recommends that implementing agencies of development projects must accept the challenge for project sustainability and actively engage the community in all the stages of project development. This study proposes that a suitable enabling institutional environment needs to be created to ensure sustainability of development projects. This would require government commitment and accountability of the implementing agencies to the local communities.