Factors influencing sustainability of community water projects: a case of Kitui west sub county, Kitui county
More than a billion people in developing world are vulnerable to access on daily basis, a reliable source of clean water. The national governments and Non-Governmental Organization have invested large sums of money over years developing community water projects to address the problem of accessibility of water, but the aspect of sustainability of the water projects is left in the hands of the community resulting to high failure rates of these projects. In order to make the investments in water supplies more effective, failure rates of these projects should be reduced. The Purpose of this study was to investigate the factors influencing sustainability of community water projects in Kitui West Sub County in order to make appropriate recommendations for enhancing sustainability of community water projects. The study was guided by the following objectives; establish how community participation influenced sustainability of community water projects, assess how technology influenced sustainability of community water projects, establish extent to which management skills influenced sustainability of community water projects, and find out how financial factors influenced the sustainability of community water projects. The study used descriptive survey research design. Data for the study was collected using closed ended questionnaires, interviews and Focused Group Discussion. The questionnaires were administered to 195 respondents, interviews were conducted to 2 government officials and 3 Focused Group Discussions were held with community management groups. The collected data was analysed and presented using descriptive statistics in form of frequency tables and Multiple Regression Analysis to establish the relationship between the variables. The study established that sustainability of community water projects in Kitui West Sub County was being influenced though differently by community participation, technology, management and financial factors. The research also established that Managerial training of management committees, managerial capacity of management committees, technical training of management committees and financial support for payments of operations and maintenance services significantly influenced sustainability of community water projects in Kitui West Sub County. The study recommends that policy makers should formulate policies aimed at addressing capacity building of management committees in terms of managerial and technical aspects. Policy makers should also formulate policies to address sustainable financing of operations and maintenance of community water projects.