Project Countries


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Restoration of over 300ha additional degraded wetlands (totalling over 500ha) and the provision of alternative livelihoods to communities in the River Rwizi catchment area
Active uptake and exchange of the work of the Rwizi Catchment Management Organisation, which IWaSP helped to establish. Other catchment management organisations undertake regular learning visits and incorporates best practices from the RCMO
Establishment of a new partnership with Kinyara Sugar Ltd and the MWE to sustainably tackle and mitigate water-related risks for communities and industry on 30,000 ha of sugarcane plantations
Context, Approach and Objectives

Over the last decade, Uganda has made great strides in providing water to its population (with 64% rural access and 72% urban access in 2014). Yet, the high rate of population growth (3% per annum), economic development (6% in 2014) and increasing urbanisation is prompting severe water risks for the population and the environment. In the future, the main water challenges facing Uganda will be the pollution of water sources, the degradation of ecosystems such as forests and wetlands, lack of enforcement of water regulations and climate change.

These challenges require a joint effort of water users from the public and private sectors and civil society organisations. In Uganda, the International Water Stewardship Programme (IWaSP) aims to improve water resource management, including the provision of drinking water and sanitation, and to promote sustainable water usage in the country.


IWaSP Partnerships in Uganda

Partnership name

Sector/ thematic area


Water Stewardship in the Kiiza Watershed

Water Resources Management

2016 to 2017

Improved Community Livelihoods and Sustainable Water Management in the River Rwizi Catchment

River Catchment Management

2013 to 2016

Public Private Dialogue on Improving Industrial Wastewater Management In Kampala

Wastewater Management

2013 to 2017

Improvement of Access to Water and Sanitation in Buliisa

WaSH & Water Resources Management

2015 to 2016

Four partnerships are currently active in Uganda.

Sustainable Water Management in the River Rwizi (2013-2016) supports the Rwizi Catchment Management Organisation (CMO) in promoting sustainable water usage and cooperation among water users, authorities and local communities. It works to improve community livelihoods and the quantity and quality of water of the River Rwizi as the main source of water for residents and industries of Mbarara, the largest town in western Uganda. This partnership between the Coca-Cola System, the Ministry of Water and Environment (MWE), civil society and IWaSP was formed in 2013. In addition, a collaboration with National Water And Sewerage Corporation (NWSC) has been initiated in the realm of this partnership. The goal of this collaboration is to improve the raw-water quality and quantity for urban areas in Mbarara and Kampala.

The Kampala Wastewater Dialogue (2013-2017) is a cooperation which aims to decrease water pollution in the main drinking water reservoir for Kampala and addresses the challenge of industrial wastewater management. Three broadly attended dialogue meetings have been organised since its inception in 2013. As a result of the Kampala Wastewater Dialogue, several environmental process audits have taken place in 2015. The dialogue includes various public and private partners and has been supported by IWaSP since October 2013.

The Access to Water and Sanitation in Buliisa (2015-2016) partnership seeks to improve water security by implementing water supply, sanitation and water resources management activities in Total’s exploration area in Western Uganda. Projects covered by this partnership include stakeholder mapping and assessments, community training and the restoration of wetlands and forests. Total E&P Uganda, the Ministry of Water and Environment (MWE) and IWaSP created the partnership in 2015.

The Water Steward in the Kiiza Watershed (2016-2017) partnership seeks to sustainably tackle and mitigate water-related risks for communities and industry around Masindi in Eastern Uganda. Partners in this partnership include Kinyara Sugar Limited, the MWE and IWaSP.


Challenges and Outlook

In the coming year, IWaSP in Uganda wants to expand its successful partnerships. This will include an extension and up-scaling of the partnership in the River Rwizi catchment area and the continuation of meetings and additional environmental process audits within the Kampala Wastewater Dialogue. Planned activities include further supporting sustainable use and management of land and water resources in the Rwizi catchment  area.

The implemented projects help to improve water quantity and quality for all, while supporting sustainable livelihoods and further sensitising people about the importance of environmentally sustainable practices. The implementation of activities will also begin in the Buliisa area. IWaSP will further continue to scope new and innovative cooperations across Uganda.

Country Set-up

In Uganda, IWaSP is anchored in the bilateral Reform of the Urban Water and Sanitation Sector (RUWASS) Programme, a joint programme of the German and Ugandan governments, implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH.

RUWASS aims to strengthen institutional, regulatory and managerial capacities for more equitable access to urban water and sanitation.

IWaSP partners in Uganda include the Ministry of Water and Environment (MWE), the Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) and the National Water and Sewerage Cooperation (NWSC).

IWaSP is an international water security programme which combines global best practices in water stewardship with local know-how. Currently active in nine countries, the seven-year programme (2013-2019) facilitates partnerships between the public sector, the private sector and civil society to address shared water risks, while improving stakeholders’ use and management of water and building their capacity to develop their own solutions. GIZ manages IWaSP on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and the UK Department for International Development (DfID).


Further information on Uganda’s water resources

Uganda is endowed with abundant water resources. According to FAO, although only 0.5% of the total available renewable water resources are currently withdrawn for use in agricultural (40%), municipal (43%) and industrial (17%) consumption, they are under increasing pressure. This is due to population growth, economic development and urbanisation, and is especially true for the fast-growing urban and agricultural centers. Climate change is projected to further intensify these threats. In addition, Uganda faces trans-boundary water challenges around Lake Victoria and in the Nile Basin.

For water management in Uganda, the biggest challenges are the over usage and pollution of water sources, the degradation of ecosystems such as forests and wetlands, the lack of enforcement of water regulations and the impact of climate change.

Contact Information

Matthew Parr
IWaSP Country Coordinator in Uganda