On Tuesday August 17, the Aga Khan Foundation (AKF) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), through the joint Thrive Tajikistan: Partnership for Socio-Economic Development project, officially opened a new drinking water supply system and a latrine at School #19 in Hamadoni district of Khatlon province. The drinking water supply system brings clean, reliable water directly to more than 2,200 people, and the school latrine improves access to proper sanitation for close to 700 schoolchildren and teachers.

The Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) Office in Tajikistan says that at today’s event attended by the local government officials, the Hamadoni district chairman, Mr. Bozorali Odinazoda, thanked the Thrive program and promised that the community would lead the management of the drinking water supply system in the future.  He stated that “The Panj River runs right by the village, but people do not have access to water.  During the 30 year celebration of the independence of Tajikistan, this is one of the best gifts the people of Chubek could have received.”

Chubek village is one of the most populated areas in Hamadoni district.  The majority of the population in the village faced challenges with access to safe water and the school’s latrine was not operational because it was not connected to a water supply.  The Mahalla Committee identified access to water and sanitation as their community’s main priorities in their village development plan.  AKF and the Aga Khan Agency for Habitat (AKAH), with the support of USAID, worked with the Mahalla Committee to address these needs by constructing a new water supply system, fitted with water meters, and rehabilitating the old latrine.

AKF’s Head of Programs, Mr. Javlon Hamdamov, expressed his deep gratitude to USAID, the district and sub-district governments, district education department, and, importantly, the people of Chubek. He said that “The focus should now be on ensuring sustainability and long-term operations and maintenance of the infrastructure, as well as influencing behavior change around water, sanitation, and hygiene. The next few months will be critical as the water supply system becomes fully operational, and as a tariff structure is put in place to ensure that the system is sustainable for decades to come."

The five-year (2018-2023) Thrive Tajikistan: Partnership for Socio-Economic Development program expands the partnership between AKF and USAID to improve the quality of life for people in all 16 districts of Tajikistan along the country’s border with Afghanistan in Khatlon Oblast and Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Region.  Thrive aims to enhance integrated socio-economic development for all.

USAID is the world’s premier international development agency and a catalytic actor driving development results. Since 1993, USAID has partnered with the Government of Tajikistan to strengthen good governance, boost economic growth, improve education, health, food security and bolster regional economic connectivity.

AKF partners with communities, nonprofits, businesses, governments, and local leaders to make long-term investments, build permanent institutions, and cultivate an active civil society.  Its work focuses on improving quality of life and breaking the cycle of poverty. For 50 years, AKF has worked for the common good of all citizens, mainly in Asia and Africa, regardless of gender, origin or religion. The AKF is a member of the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN), one of the world’s leading poverty solutions networks, established by His Highness the Aga Khan. The AKDN helps improve the quality of life for tens of millions of people annually in 30 countries. The AKDN’s integrated multi-sector approach to development is grounded in decades of experience, learning, and evaluation. 

The Aga Khan Agency for Habitat (AKAH), which merges the capabilities of Focus Humanitarian Assistance, the Aga Khan Planning and Building Services, and the Aga Khan Development Network’s Disaster Risk Management Initiative, focuses on preparing for both sudden and slow-onset disasters. The AKAH works to ensure that poor people live in physical settings that are as safe as possible from the effects of natural disasters; that residents who do live in high-risk areas are able to cope with disasters in terms of preparedness and response; and that these settings provide access to social and financial services that lead to greater opportunity and a better quality of life. Initially, priority areas of AKAH will include Afghanistan, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and India.