An Assessment of Rural Water Supply Coverage using Geo-spatial Tools: A Case Study of Bahir Dar Zuria District in Amhara Region

Arega Bazezew, Bizuayehu Bisewer


The government of Ethiopia is committed in attaining safe drinking water coverage by the year 2015. However, the focus has been on provision of drinking water and spatial coverage rather than on safe and sustainable water point sources.  The general objective of the study was to examine the rural water point sources coverage taking Bahir Dar Zuria district as a case. Five rural kebele administrations were randomly selected and a total of 124 households were selected using systematic sampling techniques for household survey.  Water point data were collected for the entire district and a total of 523 water point sources were identified and mapped using GPS, DR Garmin and water point mapper. The results showed that hand dug pump (77.4%) and hand dug wells rope pump (11.9%) were the dominant water point sources in the study area. In terms of functionality, 16% of the water point sources were not functioning during the field survey because of lack of repair and maintenance, low yield and management problems. The study, through the use of GIS environment, revealed that the distribution of water point sources in the district were dispersed spatially. It was found out that there were dense concentrations of water point sources in the southern part of the study district, while in the northwestern part; the distributions were relatively thinner, especially that of hand dug well normal pumps. From the survey data, it can be inferred that community participation and strong institutional factors helped to enhance sustainability of water supply whereas theft, lack of spare parts, shortage of technical experts, faulty operation and lack of financial support for maintenance were identified as negative factors affecting the sustainability of water point sources in the study area. The study recommended that kebele officials have to create awareness in the community on sustainable use of the available water point sources.


Water points; Functionality; accessibility; Bahir Dar Zuria

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