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Source: Emergency Water Sanitation and Hygiene in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (EWASH)
15 October 2009

WASH Cluster oPt Monthly Situation Report
Number 16 - October 15th , 2009


    • Number of persons without access to water networks in Gaza is still 10,000
    • 9 emergency filling points approved by the Joint Water Committee (JWC) to alleviate water scarcity at the beginning of the Summer are still not operational.
    • WASH materials continue, largely, to be denied entry into Gaza. In July, August and September only one truckload of materials for CMWU was allowed into Gaza, although UNICEF had some generators admitted in September. Some 5 trucks of materials for UNICEF and GVC have entered in October, so far.
    • The Consolidated Appeals Process (CAP) for 2010 is completed. The WASH cluster assessed 60 projects and in the end recommended 42 to the HCT, with a total value of 38,125,338 USD.
    • The Advocacy Taskforce is finalizing a new factsheet on access to water in the West Bank and preparing one on Water Quality and Quantity in Gaza, following largely attended workshops on rights based approaches to water and sanitation advocacy both in the West Bank and Gaza.

Overall Situation

Some 10,000 people have no access to running water. This situation will not improve until cement is allowed into the Gaza strip so that areas demolished during the Israeli offensive in early 2009 can be reconstructed.

In addition, the lack of pump motors and generators is becoming a key issue affecting the usage of new or refurbished boreholes. Absence of motors and standby generators is also critical for the winter operation of boreholes and pumps, and may lead to the breakdown of water supply, in some areas, in the event of electricity network problems. The last pump motor was installed at Salah al Haddin borehole (pictured right), however there is no standby generator there.

Monthly statistics show humanitarian aid transfer volumes allowed into Gaza continue a lower pace than previous months since the Israeli Cast Lead military operation. 590 truckloads entering into Gaza during the week of 4 - 10 October 2009, as compared with 566 trucks allowed into Gaza during the last week of September. This is the equivalent of 45% of the pre-blockade weekly average.

The situation for the WASH sector is more alarming: in the 3-month period of July to September 2009, only one truck of materials for CMWU was allowed into Gaza.

GVC obtained approval for the remaining supplies needed for the Al Bureij desalination plant. This includes: spare parts for the high pressure pumps and filters; 3 booster pumps and a 80 m3 tank in Fiberglass to distribute the water trough the municipal network; water test kits and chemical handling tools; and chemicals. This is good news, although we are awaiting confirmation that materials actually arrived.

West Bank
Severe water shortages have been affecting a large number of communities in the West Bank. Water scarcity throughout the summer season was not limited to the drought affected regions, nor to the 134 of unserved communities in the West Bank. Several served and even urbanized communities suffered from lack of water due to serious reduction of water capacity or in the pipes.

WASH Cluster humanitarian response: Gaza

Many humanitarian projects are undertaken with the cooperation of CMWU, although they are not mentioned specifically with respect to individual projects in this sitrep.

Drinking water and domestic water tankering and quality

CMWU continue to fill Oxfam-distributed filling points (19) in Beit Lahya, Ezbat Abed Rabu (Jabalia), Zaitoun, Joher El Deek, Moghraga, Qarara, Buraij, Magazi and Shoka.

GVC will soon start storage tanks distribution to 360 HHs in eastern villages of Rafah and Khan Younis governorates. GVC is also conducting sanitary inspections: identification of potential source and points of contamination and remedial actions for drinking water in about 300 HHs in the border areas of Rafah and Khan Younis governorate.

SCF work to supply and install of 90 roof water tanks and 80 households water pumps, in Beit Lahiya is now complete according to their target dates.

Domestic water network

UNDP report that the tendering process is underway to construct a main water tank of 2,700 m3 capacity in Rafah, Tal Al sultan area, which will benefit 140,000. 2009. Planned construction period of the water Tank after signing the contract: 6 Months. Tendering also is underway to construct water network in Rafah, Tal Al Sultan area. Around 1500 m of main steel and UPVC pipes will be supplied and installed, benefiting 140,000. Construction will take 2 months. Both bids will be opened on 19 Oct. 2009.

Oxfam is rehabilitating the old water network in Khan Younis in Maan Zone, scattered streets in the old city and Satter (PHP activities also imcluded). 15,000 people will benefit from this action, scheduled for completion in February 2010.

Oxfam is installing of 60m3/h water booster station in Shokah, Rafah which wtll benefit 12375 people, and be completed by Feb 2010.

GVC will soon start rehabilitation works of water supply systems at municipal level for 505 households in Shoka and Al-Nasser (Rafah governorate), Bani Suheila and Khan Younis city (Khan Younis governorates)

SCF are replacing 800m of water pipelines in Yebna (Rafah). Work benefiting 650 people should be complete by now.

SCF Work to install new 1550 water pipelines in Beit Lahiya, benefiting 500 people should now be complete.

Water Sources, Quality and Desalination

Work on the (QRC/IDB) borehole at Al Maghazi area (middle area) is expected to finish in about 1 month.

In Salah El Deen, the borehole is now in service, with the only omission being a standby generator. Following work at Sallah Al Haddin and Al Marwa work will start to upgrade the well at Al Khazam (SIDA).

The (Islamic Relief) borehole at Al Mawasi, near Khanyounis, has been completed – it now needs connecting to the electricity network.

Implementation works of new two CMWU wells (W1 & W3) have been started in Western Rafah area – both wells will need electrical motors imported from Israel. This project is funded by World Bank.

Works have been begun in digging new (Muslim Hands) borehole at Deir Al-Balah area. The capacity of the well will be 50m3/hr. It is due to be completed by Nov 2009.

Abu Naser water well, Deir Al Balah, Installation of complete 160A electrical control switchboard compatible to drive the pump motor of 100hp with all associated power and control circuit (PHO) – this should be completed next week

At Aysha, Zawaida, El Jamia, Al Shoka boreholes in Rafah, installation of desinfection units (chlorine tank, mixer, dosing pumps, swich boards) should be completed next week (PHO).

UNICEF is working on installation of 6 small desalination units each 50m3/day in Deir Balah, Khan Younis, Rafah, Maghazi and Jabalia.

Waste water infrastructure

UNDP report that the Initial Design Report has been approved for Khan Younis Waste Water Treatment Plant (KY WWTP). The on-site detailed geotechnical investigations in Al Fukhari proposed Infiltration area are currently carried out by digging deep borehole. The activities of the Environmental Impact Assessment, EIA, are proceeding. Beneficiaries will include: 217,532 (phase I) and the 2025 design population for the plant is 376,159. The Detailed Design Contract shall be completed by the end of Feb 2010 and construction works of KY WWTP is planned to be completed within two years after finalizing the Detailed Design.

GVC will soon start the repair and/or reconstruction of wastewater systems and sanitary installations at household level, including household connections to sewage line in (Al Tanoor and Al Salam area): 150 households and rehabilitation/construction of cesspits/septic tanks in the Eastern villages of Rafah and Khan Younis: 20 households.

In El Sater – Khan Younis area, a PHO project will work on sewage networks construction, connection to the main sewer and the closing of cesspits. The project will reach 12000 direct beneficiaries, by eliminating sewage infiltration to the water supply system and groundwater hereby improving public health, quality of life and the environment of El Sater area. The project has just been approved by HRF and will be finalized by mid March 2010.

Oxfam is constructing sewage pipeline at Sekka Road (phase 3) and Kateeba street, both in Khan Younis, helping 1505 people. The project, including a health promotion component, will be completed by February 2010. Oxfam is also starting the construction of a sewage network in Abu Bakir St (Rafah). The project, benefiting 1000 people, will be finished by June 2010.

Finally, Oxfam is starting the construction of a sewage pressure main from Tal Al sultan (Rafah) to Rafah Waste Water Treatment Plant. The work, benefiting 55,000 people, will be completed by June 2010.

Solid waste

COOPI continues to implement solid waste collection activities through cash for work programme, expected to last till February 2010. COOPI has currently reached 459 beneficiaries in Gaza City, Beit Lahiya, Beit Hanoun, Jabalia and Um an Nasser, collecting an average of 1500 tons per week. The rehabilitation of Al Yarmouk transfer station by COOPI is expected to start on November/December 2009.

Oxfam is also starting a solid waste disposal project in Al Salam & Tal Al Sultan in Rafah, which will last until June 2010, benefiting 50 households.


UNICEF has organized Global Hand Washing Day celebrations and activities in 80 schools in Gaza (and 48 in the West Bank) including awareness for students and teachers with PHG and MoEHE on Thursday 15th October.

Oxfam is rehabilitating water and sanitation facilities in six kindergartens: Al Hanim KG and Al Iman KG in Al Amal (Khan Younis); Al Sanabel KG in Al Zara’a (Gaza city); Eillen KG in Al Zytoon (Gaza City); Hitten KG in Gaza City; and Hekma KG in East of Gaza (Al Shaf). The project also includes public health promotion activities, addressing school committees. The project will be completed in March 2010 and will benefit 720 people.

SCF work to supply and install of desalination units in 2 KGs in Gaza city, benefiting 2935 people should now be complete.

WASH Cluster humanitarian response – West Bank

Water Scarcity

Agencies, such as ACF, Oxfam, PHG and CARE are alleviating water scarcity needs in drought struck areas with providing water tankering all through the summer and continue to do so in the next months. PHG has taken up the monitoring of this process in addition to their WASH MP.

In preparation of an inter-sector Task Force, the WASH Cluster working group convened on 14th of October to follow up on the water scarcity situation in the West Bank. The group will convene regularly to track the emergency drought response of the various agencies this season, as well as to see how a more comprehensive response can be prepared for next year.

Filling Points

Although the Joint Water Committee gave green light for the establishment of 9 ‘emergency’ filling points to alleviate the immediate suffering of unserved communities in the West Bank in the beginning of the summer, and 5 out of 9 got an informal approval by Mekorot in August, not a single one has been operational by the end of the summer. According to the most recent information the emergency response projects are being stalled by the Israeli Civil Authority for unknown reasons.

WASH Cluster activities


The most recent Gaza Response Activity Database (GRAD) update for the WASH Cluster had a rather modest response by the partners. To avoid incomplete mapping, OCHA request partners to update or include their projects in the database by the end of October at the very latest.

Updating is all the more important since the GRAD will be compared to the House Hold Survey PHG is undertaking on behalf of the WASH Cluster. Agencies’ activities will be cross checked with the water and sanitation situation on the ground.

CAP 2010

Beginning of October agencies were invited to upload their project proposal for the 2010 Consolidated Appeal Process (CAP). For the WASH cluster a total 60 projects were introduced for a total of 47,334,723 USD. After an elaborate vetting process, including the WASH Cluster partners, PWA, CMWU, UNDP and the Cluster coordinators 42 projects were recommended to the HCT, with a total value of 38,125,338 USD. 31 projects were ranked as high priority, while 10 were marked as Early Recovery.

The Consolidated Appeals Process (CAP) for 2010 will be completed in the following weeks with a final approval of the sector response plans.

Contingency planning

The WASH contingency plan for Gaza is in a final drafting stage. For the West Bank, a working group meeting is planned for the last week of October.

Gaza household survey

In August and September 1250 households have been interviewed. The first comparative report is being prepared by PHG, using global WASH Cluster survey guidelines. The results will be crosschecked with the agencies’ activities in Gaza.

EWASH Advocacy Task Force

The HCT media event of 3rd of September on the impact of the blockade on the Water and Sanitation situation in Gaza is still yielding attention in local and international media.

The Advocacy Taskforce is finalizing a new fact sheet on access to water in the West Bank and preparing one on Water Quality and Quantity in Gaza.

Beginning of October, COHRE and ACF organized two workshops on rights based approaches to water and sanitation advocacy both in the West Bank and Gaza, for the Advocacy Task Force. The workshops were largely attended and enjoyed very active participation. A number of participants expressed an interest in receiving further training on utilizing rights-based indicators for monitoring purposes.

In a meanwhile, the first film ‘Gaza is floating’ has been finalized by Lifesource and fully approved by the EWASH. Two films on the West Bank are in the making and the production of a second Gaza film will start soon.

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