Monitoring water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) programmes in Timor-Leste with time-stamped, geo-coded images
Many groups are working to improve the water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) situation in Timor-Leste. Recent availability of low-cost digital cameras that take geo-coded, time-stamped photos offers opportunities to easily improve WASH programme monitoring. From 2010 to 2012, Oxfam staff in remote locations in Timor-Leste have taken photos, overlaying these onto satellite imagery and creating maps to 1) establish status of water systems built previously by Oxfam; 2) monitor quality of current water system construction; and 3) locate community-built household sanitation and hand-washing facilities. The resulting maps produced for villagers, donors, project managers, government, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) have augmented monitoring performance and resource use efficiency, increased communication and transparency, and improved programme impact. These easy-to-understand visual maps can help government understand necessary repair work, and help monitor frequency and quality of construction.