Guatemala: Capacity-Building amongst the Mam People in Water and Sanitation Economic Governance


More than 40 percent of Guatemala’s rural dwellers do not have access to water in their homes, and even those who do often lack the most basic sanitation. The Joint Programme's goal was to promote an integrated water management system that will help guarantee wider provision of, and access to, water and sanitation in urban and rural areas of the Mam region of Guatemala. It focused on strengthening local government and on increasing the role and contribution of Mam communities in the design and implementation of public initiatives through improved dialogue.

The programme also strengthened local government, especially jointly-constituted bodies, in order to achieve effective economic management. Functioning on three levels – local, national and international – it also aimed to achieve results in three areas consistent with the commitments made by governments in the Millennium Declaration in 2000: productive rural development, good governance and the fight against social exclusion.

Some of the results of the programme were:
  • National and local capacities for planning were strengthened. Two national policies were developed and approved: the National Policy on Water Resources Management and the National Policy on Water and Sanitation. Another regional water policy was developed for the Association of Municipalities of the Mancuerna region.
  • Ministry staff members were trained on water management through a Diploma certificate programme.
  • Municipal Offices for Water and Sanitation services were strengthened in each of the eight municipalities of intervention. Technical and administrative support, as well as training, was provided.


Click for more detailed results from the Joint Programmes in Guatemala.



The Joint Programme in action


Programme Dates 31 Aug 2009 - 30 Jun 2013
Net funded amount $5,949,000
Participating UN agencies FAO, PAHO / WHO, UNDP, UNFPA, UNICEF
National partners Vicepresidencia de la República de Guatemala; Ministerio de Agricultura, Ganadería y Alimentación; Ministerio de Ambiente y Recursos Naturales; Instituto de Fomento Municipal; Ministerio de Salud Pública y Asistencia Social; Mancomunidad de municipios de la cuenca del río Naranjo - MANCUERNA
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