In a major milestone for the Tina River Hydropower water supply program, critical field survey work for all communities in Bahomea, and Malango(Malatoha, Belaha), has now been completed with the project benefits set to positively impact approximately 5000 residents. It has taken three months for the Community Benefit Sharing Program (CBSP) team to complete the work on what will be the biggest water supply project installation undertaking of its kind in the country; with a multi-million-dollar investment focused on one region within Central Guadalcanal.
The work to date has been guided by the initial WASH investment priority list produced in 2016 by the Tina River Project Office. This list was used to review the locations and come up with data that is now being applied to design and construct the actual water systems.
The recent work has identified eighteen (18) community packages in total and looked at a number of potential water sources and the different means required to transfer water from sources to the communities. As with many rural communities, the field work uncovered locations situated in challenging terrains and because of that, additional manpower and investment may be required to allow the transfer of water from the source to its final destination.
Now, one of the biggest challenges for the team ahead is to ensure designs are customized to suit the proposed packages. This means water pumps, fittings and even tanks have to be calculated accordingly to cater for individual designs and community settings. The designs will integrate the most appropriate technologies to transfer water from sources mainly boreholes and streams to include water pumps and solar technology.
Actual construction is planned to begin mid next year with the final designs to be reviewed by expert stakeholders in a validation workshop held by the end of2020.
With the Tina River Hydropower Development Project and CBSP components focused on investing in community capacity building, the water supply project will also provide specific training opportunities for locals in preparation for its roll out.
The CBSP is funded by the World Bank under the Japanese Social Development Fund (JSDF) and implemented by the Solomon Islands Government’s Ministry of Mines, Energy and Rural Electrification (MMERE) through the Tina Project Office, CBSP program.