Nepal: Rural water services for all

Pathways taken by a four-year project in Nepal’s Dailekh and Sarlahi districts, resulting in 75,600 residents gaining access to safely managed water supply services.

  • Abstract

    Though water supply management and inclusive service policies exist in Nepal, enforcement remains at large. In 2015, the country federalised its governance system. Years later, local governments – particularly rural municipalities – still face challenges in fulfilling their roles and responsibilities.

    This brief documents experiences and lessons from a four-year SNV project with partners (2018-22) that sought to strengthen the capacity of rural municipality officials to fulfil their water governance mandate. While focused on enabling local government leadership, strategies mentioned in this brief additionally underscore the significance of strengthening multi-stakeholder processes of rural water decision-making, implementation, and monitoring.

    Going forward it asserts that stakeholder capacity building within water programming must continue, particularly in the context of performance monitoring, reviewing and adapting plans, and strengthening the resilience of water services in the face of climate-induced droughts, heatwaves, flooding, and glacial lake outburst floods.

  • Bibliography

    SNV, ‘Accelerating inclusive and sustainable rural water services in Nepal for all’, Project Brief, Inclusive and Sustainable Rural Water Supply Services in Nepal (2018-2022), The Hague, SNV, 2023.

  • Donors & Partners

    UTS-ISF, CBM Australia, Rural Women Upliftment Association, Everest Club, Water for Women, Australian Aid, eight rural municipalities in Dailekh and Sarlahi

  • For more information

    Ratan Budhathoki, Project Leader, Rural Water Supply Services, SNV in Nepal

Further reading


COVID-19 feminist economic recovery - WASH


Engaging men to transform gender roles in WASH


Brief: Unpacking inequalities in rural access to Nepal's safely managed water services

A person with disability using an accessible handpump in Ramnagar RM Sarlahi Nepal

Inclusive climate resilient rural WASH services - Nepal