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  • Khuzwayo Tembo

Aguaconsult Newsletter Autumn 2023

Welcome to the Aguaconsult Autumn Newsletter!

I'm Khuzwayo, a WASH specialist and civil/environmental engineer who joined the Aguaconsult team in 2023 after completing my Master's in Sanitation at the IHE Delft Institute for Water Education. My journey includes five years of hands-on experience in WASH programme implementation within informal urban settlements in Lusaka, Zambia, notably on the Lusaka Sanitation Program where I contributed to the foundational work of promoting city-wide inclusive sanitation (CWIS).

Globally, while 45% of countries are on track to achieve their national drinking-water coverage goals, only 25% are making similar progress in sanitation. This alarming discrepancy shows that achieving SDG 6.2 - ensuring access to adequate and equitable sanitation for all - remains a formidable challenge. At Aguaconsult, we remain committed to addressing these challenges by providing technical support to NGOs, development partners, national governments, and service providers.

As part of Aguaconsult's dynamic and multidisciplinary team, I have the privilege of contributing my skills and experiences to a diverse range of projects worldwide. I particularly value the opportunity to engage in projects with varying socio-political considerations, marrying my engineering background with holistic socio-political and governance perspectives.

Hope you enjoy the read!

Guest editor, Khuzwayo Tembo


Conrad N Hilton Foundation

In late 2022, the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation commissioned Aguaconsult to conduct a portfolio review of its Safe Water Initiative which is being implemented in Ethiopia, Ghana, and Uganda by a wide range of partners. The review is an opportunity to analyse the Foundation’s investments in service delivery models and how these align with broader trends in rural water provision, government-led efforts at professionalizing services and financing requirements. This review has taken almost one year to conduct with a series of in-country dissemination events scheduled for the first quarter of 2024 but we have produced a global landscaping document looking at trends in rural water. For more information, please contact Harold Lockwood or Elise Jabagi.

Ministry of Water and Sanitation, Malawi

Aguaconsult conducted a study for Malawi's Ministry of Water and Sanitation on the necessary measures to professionalise management arrangements for rural and small-town water supply services, including optimal management arrangements for piloting and upscaling and necessary sector reforms. In late October, we will support the Ministry to launch the study and set out the desired way forward and work with key sector stakeholders to develop a roadmap for implementing the study's recommendations. For more information, please contact Bill Twyman.

REAL Water

For the past two years, Aguaconsult has been part of the USAID-funded REAL Water project's Improving Management Performance research stream. This focuses on understanding what affects good performance in rural water service delivery. Our initial study took place in Ghana, where we conducted an evaluation of three management approaches: community-based management, public utility provision, and safe water enterprises. The study applied both quantitative and qualitative methods, including a comprehensive Political Economy Analysis, to identify the factors that impact performance. The results of this study will be available soon and you can join us this October at the UNC Water and Health conference, where we will present our findings. For more information, please contact Analia Saker or Julia Boulenouar.


We are collaborating with 11 WaterAid country programmes to assess the level of technical, financial, organisational development, monitoring and regulatory support that management models for rural and small-town water supply services are currently receiving. This consists of mapping management models, determining the level of support that is to be provided to these models across a series of dimensions, both in policy terms and reality. As part of this process we are supporting WaterAid country programmes to facilitate workshops designed to establish the levels of support actually provided. For more information, please contact Bill Twyman or Eléonore Motte.

Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, UK Government

In collaboration with IRC WASH, we have supported the design of FCDO's £18.5 million WASH Systems for Health programme by conducting rapid and in-depth assessments in several countries. These assessments identified the government's systems strengthening priorities, sector needs, and opportunities for complementarities with other development partner programmes and informed the design of country programme outlines. For more information, please contact Bill Twyman.



The Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources in Ghana, in partnership with UNICEF, commissioned Aguaconsult to conduct a study that offers a comprehensive analysis of Ghana's evolving disaster risk landscape, especially its impact on WASH services and infrastructure. This study presents key findings and recommendations, aiming to inform policymakers, stakeholders, and development partners. It encourages them to adopt proactive strategies and actions to strengthen disaster resilience and ensure the continuous provision of water and sanitation services. For more information, please contact Elise Jabagi.


We are excited to be working with a new client, the USA-based Shockwave Foundation, to carry out an assessment of current approaches to providing climate resilient water services. This study is being co-funded with the Osprey Foundation. The need to respond to the challenges presented by more extreme climate events is well recognised but there is a gap in knowledge and guidance on how to do this in practice, how it can be financed and what implementing NGOs can do to improve their programming. We are starting this assignment in October and will provide further updates in the next newsletter of 2024. For more information, please contact Elise Jabagi or Mariana Portal Carus.



Aguaconsult, in collaboration with a consortium led by WSUP and including ESAWAS, UCLC, Thuyloi University, and GSMA, was entrusted by UN-Habitat to develop the Global Report on Sanitation and Wastewater Management in Cities and Human Settlements. The report was developed with the financial support of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Agence Française de Développement and was published in July 2023. This status report presents the global situation of wastewater and fecal sludge management in the context of what is recognised as "best practice". For more information, please contact Elise Jabagi.

CWIS Tajikistan

Aguaconsult is jointly working with AWF, a consulting firm based in Pakistan, on a situational analysis for CWIS in Dushanbe, Tajikistan. This is being carried out on behalf of the UNICEF-Tajikistan office and includes the development of a shit flow diagram, analysis of the enabling environment for sanitation service provision, and the development of a strategy and costed action plan for improved sanitation in Dushanbe. For more information, please contact Khuzwayo Tembo

Water Integrity Network

Working with the Water Integrity Network we have developed a tool to assess the extent to which regulatory frameworks for CWIS account for and effectively address key integrity issues. We are now working with key stakeholders in Bangladesh, Rwanda and Zambia to apply the tool and distil key learnings. For more information, please contact Khuzwayo Tembo and Bill Twyman.


Ministry of Water and Energy Niger

Aguaconsult is collaborating with WHO to support the Ministry of Water and Energy in Niger to implement the first edition of the WASH accounts in the country. After several months of start-up, the process was formally launched during an initial workshop in October 2023 and should be completed in the next six months. For more information, please contact Julia Boulenouar.

Aguaconsult is currently conducting and end of programme evaluation for in Bangladesh, Cambodia, and India. The evaluation involves assessing programme performance, partner performance, and the sector-level impact of the water credit model in these countries. Data has been collected through a combination of sources and methods and the analysis and write up will be completed in the coming month. The assignment includes collaborating with Big Blue communications to produce impact stories. For more information, please contact Julia Boulenouar or Elise Jabagi.

All Systems Connect

Aguaconsult co-led Theme 1 on delivering safely managed water and sanitation services and facilitated sessions on the drivers and implications for systems strengthening for the transitions from community based management to more professionalised models and how regulators can enhance the delivery of non-conventional sanitation services. The team also supported several other sessions, including the government sprints. For more information, please contact Julia Boulenouar or Harold Lockwood.

Accelerating progress on System strengthening in WASH

In collaboration with the Osprey Foundation, Aguaconsult convened a two-day event in London, in October 2023 to discuss practical ways of accelerating progress on system strengthening in the WASH sector. The event brought together 30 professionals from 22 different organisations and 11 countries, focussing on three themes identified in prior consultations as priority areas of acceleration: stimulating and sustaining government leadership in support of system strengthening; generating stronger evidence on system strengthening and improving Collective Action. For more information, please contact Julia Boulenouar.

Employee ownership

Since its establishment in 2003 by the founder, Harold Lockwood, the company has developed and grown into a dynamic and successful business working across many geographies and with a range of clients. Starting around eighteen months ago, and with a view to the future governance and ownership structure of the company, we embarked on a process of Employee Ownership transition. This has been an intense undertaking involving many long hours of discussions, forecasting and exploring new legal frameworks. It has not always been an easy path, but the shared vision of a future in which all employees have a say and can benefit from the success of the company has been a constant. We could not have achieved this without the amazing support of the EO specialists at Baxendale, so a big thanks to them all. As of July 2023, we have succeeded in these efforts, with 100% ownership transferring to a new Trust, and are proud to now be an Employee-owned business.

New staff

Khuzwayo’s title of “newest member” of the company only lasted a few months! Aguaconsult has since had two more additions to the team and we were happy to welcome Joey Wright, our new Operations Officer and Mariana Portal Carús who joined as a WASH Finance Specialist.

Mariana Portal Carús Joey Wright

WASH Finance Specialist Operations Officer


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