September 2021

Aquaya Awarded $18.9 Million USAID Cooperative Agreement

REAL-Water Program to Expand the Rural Water Services Knowledge Base

The Aquaya Institute has been awarded a five-year, $18.9 million Cooperative Agreement from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) for the Rural Evidence and Learning for Water (REAL-Water) program. REAL-Water will evaluate strategies for expanding access to safe, equitable, and sustainable rural water across the developing world.

Eight out of ten people without basic water services live in rural areas. Achieving the Sustainable Development Goal of safe and affordable drinking water for all by 2030 requires a thorough understanding of rural water supply challenges and solutions.

The REAL-Water program will conduct research on three primary topics:

  • Professionalization of rural water service delivery
  • Strengthening of water quality monitoring in rural areas
  • Improved planning for water resources

REAL-Water will support policy makers, development partners, and service providers to make strategic decisions and implement best practices for water management through implementation research. Further, it will ensure coordination with USAID programs contributing to the Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) and Water Resources Management (WRM) knowledge base, in alignment with the USAID Water for the World Implementation Research Agenda.

REAL-Water is an initiative of the Center for Water Security, Sanitation and Hygiene in USAID’s Bureau for Resilience and Food Security with support from the Office for Maternal and Child Health and Nutrition in USAID’s Bureau for Global Health.

REAL-Water partners include:

  1. Aguaconsult, United Kingdom
  2. Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment (ATREE), India
  3. Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), Ghana
  4. Skat Foundation’s Rural Water Supply Network (RWSN), Switzerland
  5. Safe Water Network, USA
  6. Water Mission, USA
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