Water and Women’s Participation The Case of One Million Rural Cisterns Program in Serra Talhada, Pernambuco
Water Resource Management
The participation of women is crucial in the domain of water management, given the vital role women play in the collection and maintenance of communal water supplies, and in regulating and controlling its use. Unfortunately, they are seldom considered in the development of water policies, and rarely are they members of bodies regulating water management. Current evidence suggests that the participation of women in rural water supply projects leads to improved outcomes for both women and the wider community. Using interviews, focus groups, questionnaires, and field observation, this paper explores the participation of women in the One Million Rural Cisterns Program, and how this has contributed to more sustainable water management in Serra Talhada, Brazil. The work highlighted the role of women in domestic water management by examining the changes which occurred in communities, and particularly the impact on women’s day to day lives, following implementation of the program, as well as the specific views of women regarding solutions to local problems. This research adds new context-specific data to the understanding of the One Million Rural Cisterns Program and highlights the essential role of the participation of women and gender equity more generally.