The Global Water Initiative (GWI) was an action-research and advocacy programme that ran from 2008-17. The project is now closed. This site is no longer being updated, but allows access to GWI outputs until 1 October 2020 when it will also close. After that date, information about the project and core GWI technical publications will continue to be available from the IIED website and Publications Library.

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GWI West Africa work in Ghana began in 2008 and ended in 2012 under the first phase of GWI work on IWRM & WASH.

Starting point

GWI Ghana’s 2008 baseline study of water and sanitation provision in the Upper West Region showed that vulnerable populations had limited access to potable water (approximately 50% coverage). There was low hygiene awareness among schools and communities, as well as low sanitation coverage and usage (more than 90% of local people were defecating in the open).

When GWI Ghana began working in the Upper West Region, there was also very little community participation in water resource management. The local government authorities lacked capacity to manage water resources effectively, and there was no platform for stakeholder engagement. Conflict was common between different water users (i.e. settled agriculturalists and nomadic pastoralists). Our programme was therefore much-needed, and our intervention was timely.

Project achievements

  • Provided potable water for more than 17,000 people.
  • Facilitated sanitation access for more than 10,150 people.
  • Drastically reduced the practice of open defecation (to less than 50% in project communities).
  • Established a hydrological profile for the upstream section of the Black Volta Basin in Ghana to guide water resources planning, programming and management.
  • Partnered with state institutions for capacity building of staff of local government water authorities, communities, traditional authorities, and other local and international NGOs.

Find out more:

Browse and download project reports, technical tools and articles produced by the GWI Ghana team.





Project Coordinator



Issifu ADAMA

Community Development

Peter Jayome CHAMIK

Sanitation and Hygiene

Mohammed Ali IBRAHIM