Potable fresh water right from the supply tap is still a dream for millions of villagers in Bangladesh. Arsenic contamination of ground water meanwhile has emerged as grave concern. However, it is a different story in a village of Munshigonj district where some 2,000 people have had access to piped water supply. The World Bank and the Social Development Foundation (SDF) has supported BURO Bangladesh to make the dream into reality.

The SDF, is implementing the government’s Social Investment Program Project (SIPP) with assistance from the World Bank, launched the water pilot under ‘Private Financing of Public Utilities’ scheme. This has become an innovative model of public, private and people’s participation.

As a part of SIPP and for reducing the health hazards due to arsenic contamination, the World Bank has provided financial grants support of 40-50% for piloting village piped water supply project. BURO Bangladesh is being implementing the project in Puran Baushia village under Gazaria Upazila of Munshigonj District.

The project aims at supplying water free from arsenic, iron and other harmful elements to 570 target households through a piped network at a price that is affordable to the population and making the project commercially viable. BURO Bangladesh has constructed a water tank of 75,000 liter capacity along with a treatment plant of 30,000 liter capacity. The number of households that were connected has stood so far at 487 including 5% households from hardcore poor community. The number of pipe line connections is gradually increasing. BURO Bangladesh is getting bills from the users regularly.

The community contribution to the project is 10%, BURO Bangladesh 40% while SDF/The World Bank has contributed 50% of the project cost.