Increasing Safe Water Consumption in Ghana through Pipeline-Connected Remote Kiosks

Remote kiosk operator with customer. Photo Credit: Safe Water Network

Safe Water Network has been active in Ghana since 2009, when it established five water systems in peri-urban areas there. Based on research that found a steep decline in household penetration based on distance from a water station, SWN began installing “remote kiosks” — additional points of sale, staffed by a single operator and connected to a community’s main purification site by pipeline.

Project objectives

  • Increase safe water adoption rates in a cost-effective way by making points of sale more convenient
  • Quantify the relationship between convenience and safe water consumption

Successes

  • Sales roughly doubled in the first month of introducing kiosks in Dzemeni (a rural fishing village) and Pokuase (a peri-urban community). Increased levels of sales have persisted over a year in both sites
  • Increase in sales occurred regardless of whether adoption rates in the area had previously been high or low
  • Total system cost per liter declined by 33% in Dzemeni and 56% in Pokuase — converting the water system in the latter from unprofitable to profitable

Challenges

  • Difficulty securing required quantities of source water
  • Severe electricity shortages interfered with pumping
  • Some kiosks were initially only served by sporadic truck delivery

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