Clean water; healthier environment, healthier people

*building accountability, transparency

Timor Leste - It is important to remember when designing conservation projects in developing countries that when someone's child is sick, parents will do whatever it takes to save their child. They will do things they normally would not in order to quickly get the money to buy the medicine to make their child well (e.g. poaching, illegal logging).

In Timor-Leste, diarrhea is the leading cause of under 5 child deaths and accounts for approximately 5000 child deaths each year.

So with these things in mind, in one pilot study with Oxfam we are using some of tools and training we developed for documenting biodiversity to report on water and sanitation projects. The immediate goal of the pilot is build the capacity of national staff in humanitarian organizations to document needs and the progress on water projects. Secondarily, to increase transparency and accountability to donors. The longer term goals are to improve coordination and promote cooperation between developmental and conservation organizations.

This system actually took about two hours to setup and about 30 minutes of training with national staff; equipment costs were minimal.