Final external evaluation Max-WASH I

The final evaluation of the Max-WASH I project has sought to assess the contribution of the project against the agreement signed with the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands within the broader context of the challenges facing the WASH sector in Bangladesh and the priorities identified within the Sustainable Development Goals.

The main conclusion of the evaluation team is that the uniqueness and the relevance of the Max-WASH projects are extremely high in the key water and sanitation areas prioritized by the SDGs. The Max-WASH project has developed several innovative practices that are significant in positioning rural Bangladesh to respond to the challenges posed by the SDGs. The Max-WASH innovations in hygiene (handwashing with soap & WASH for Babies), sanitation (sweeper-led sanitation marketing & septic pits), menstrual hygiene management (women’s bathing chambers), water supply (cluster & mini-piped water networks) and child health (linking WASH & child growth monitoring) have been significant.

The Max-WASH implementation modalities were tailored to deliver high efficiency projects with minimal Max Foundation management overheads attempting to define the implementation of modalities and costs of activities by PNGOs.

In terms of outcomes, the Max-WASH programme has made major contribution in critical areas –most notably in changing mindsets, in practices in relation to sanitation and in feeding patterns for children under the age of five. More work and time is required to reach those who have not yet benefited from these programme areas and to allow new and adapted strategies to bear fruit. This will take place in the Max-WASH II programme 2016-2020.

Some of the achievements from the programme are:
> Due to efficiency gains (like central purchasing of deep tube wells) the programme has reached 880,000 people, 10% more than was planned
> For every Euro that we provided in sanitation subsidies for the ultra-poor, households have spent €5.7 of their own money in sanitation.
> Household and government invested 1,8 milion Euro by their own in safe water and sanitation.
>The Max-WASH project has developed several innovative practices that are significant in positioning rural Bangladesh to respond to the challenges posed by the SDGs (12-step latrine, Maxi-Basin, Women Bathing Chamber, Stunted Free Village, Small Piped Schemes).
> Capacity building and stimulation of local entrepreneurs is an effective way to accelerate sanitation coverage.
> Sanitation coverage in Max-WASH areas increased in 3 years time from 22% to 66%.


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