The "Rain Community" project aims to improve the resilience of Nepalese populations to the hazards of climate change. Better management of water resources at the watershed level is implemented to promote water infiltration.
République et Canton de Genève, Fonds 1% pour le développement, Commune de Puplinge
2019-2021 (24 mois)
In Nepal, east of Pokhara, rural communities are sometimes unable to meet their daily water needs. The effects of climate change and changing rainfall patterns are exacerbating people's vulnerability. Rainfall is more variable, dry seasons longer and monsoons more intense, with long-term negative effects on subsistence agriculture. As a result, hilltop communities are quickly depleted of their water resources during dry periods. These effects are exacerbated by heavy urban development in the lowlands, which has increased the demand for water, reducing the availability of water to upstream communities.
Dependent on rainfall for their crops, villagers are deeply affected by an intensification of droughts. The region has been provided with solar-powered lift systems that carry water up to 80-100m in elevation. However, these techniques are costly and complex to implement and maintain in the context of underdevelopment.
In addition, women, young girls and the elderly are often left alone in the villages. The emigration of men and young people to the cities for economic and educational reasons empties the countryside of its labour force. The burden of collecting water from springs becomes even more difficult for the women who remain in their villages.
The Water Use Master Plan (WUMP) approach is used to implement integrated water resources management in the intervention area. Communities and local authorities are involved throughout the process. In order to understand the communities' knowledge of water management, a participatory 3D mapping exercise is underway. This work will determine the location of water points, describe the characteristics of the sources, understand the environmental factors that influence the resilience of the services, and define a methodology for source management.