For the past 25 years, we’ve worked together with the people of the Marshall Islands to enhance community resilience and improve schools, hospitals, utilities and public infrastructure.
At the heart of the Marshall Islands is its capital atoll – Majuro. Recently, we partnered with Majuro Water & Sewer Company (MWSC) to create strategic and development plans to bring their 20-year vision to life.
Their vision: “All of Majuro has access to safe, affordable, reliable and resilient water and sanitation services that support healthy communities to flourish now and in the future.”
The strategic plan establishes the most appropriate water and sanitation services for Majuro for the next 20 years while the development plan sets out how these services will be implemented. This includes technical assistance, capital upgrades, institutional strengthening and financial management improvements.
Dispersed across a remote part of the north Pacific, the low-lying Marshall Islands has some unique challenges. Their remote location, high population density and no surface source of freshwater means they’re particularly susceptible to the effects of climate change and drought.
Rising to these challenges is the unifying and vibrant culture of the Marshallese people, which can only be described as ‘Iakwe.’ It’s the Marshallese greeting meaning hello, welcome, love and respect. It’s the pride Marshallese have in retaining their culture and traditions while embracing the modern world.
So it was hugely important that we embraced the spirit of ‘lakwe’ in our community and stakeholder engagement and in creating their strategic and development plans. Workshops, meetings and a community household survey were held in local villages, supported by a weekly radio programme, media articles, social media and face-to-face discussions. This engagement was fundamental to ensuring solutions were suitable, sustainable, and provided lasting value for current and future generations.