I’ve been given a new placement last-minute. Instead of collaborating with Oxfam in Women’s Rights advocacy and prevention I will be working with the Ecological Development Fund in Water Resource Management. Describing my new line of work seems more cryptic than Women’s Rights, and I have worked hard to grasp the concept myself.
I finally found articles that deal with water in a social, not natural science frame. An interesting article outlines the efforts of various countries (Madagascar, Kenya, Israel and the U.S) to decentralize their water resources and to “augment community participation”. It presents decentralization as a problematic approach stating that communities are “ill-prepared to carry out their municipal functions and unable to raise the level of user-fees or community taxes necessary to fund infrastructure development”. I would like to think that decentralization is a beneficial endeavour. My placement is entirely based on increasing community involvement in the protection and management of clean water sources. It stemms from a history of decentralizing water management in Honduras that is vast and complex, involving the IMF, the World Bank and a multitude of International NGO’s. Some articles accuse the World Bank for including water-privatization as a condition for new loans. The first months in San Marcos, Honduras will be filled with exploring and witnessing the impacts of decentralization to provide contextual art-workshops.
Most recently, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, has cut off $30 Million USD in an effort to increase political pressure on interim government and restore the elected president Manuel Zelaya. We will see how this trickles down.
For further reading: