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Turn on the Tap and Water Flows Abundantly

Turn on the Tap and Water Flows Abundantly

Partiani, or usually known as Mak Ti (67-year old resident of RT13/RW02, Penjernihan Dalam street, Bubutan urban village, Surabaya, and a soto seller), had waited a long time to access PDAM water at home.The fact that she lives in an informal area, where she does not own the land, makes it difficult to access PDAM service through regular connections.

Due to this situation, Mak Ti had to use shallow water for washing and bathing. Yet, the well water is not consumable because it is murky. For the family’s consumption purposes and cooking the soto to sell, Mak Ti’s family, consisting of three adults and one child, had to spend Rp150,000 on water every month.

“Spending Rp150,000 per month for water only is quite a lot for a soto seller like me. I wanted to have PDAM water at home because I heard that the water is cheaper and I could save time,” said Mak Ti.

Mak Ti’s dream came true when PDAM Surya Sembada – Surabaya city owned water utility – built a master meter system on Penjernihan Dalam Street in RT13/RW02 through a multi-stakeholder partnership with PTPN XI, YISI, and USAID IUWASH PLUS at the end of 2018. Through this partnership, PDAM Surya Sembada built a master meter on the PDAM’s main pipe, while PTPN XI assisted the community members to build house connections to the master meter.

Given that the community members through CBO (community-based organization) will manage the master meter system, USAID IUWASH PLUS through its grantee, YISI, trained the CBO on the master meter operation and maintenance as well as financial management.

In December 2018, the multi-stakeholder partnership among PDAM Surya Sembada, PTPNXI, USAID IUWASH PLUS, and YISI completed the construction of 25 house connections to a master meter in RT13/RW 12 of Penjernihan Dalam street. Since then, the master meter system has benefitted 125 people, including Mak Ti.

“Water is no longer a problem now. I just turn on the tap and the water flows abundantly day and night. I can use the water for all purposes, including cooking the soto. More importantly, water expense is now cheaper, only Rp26,000 per month,” said Mak Ti with her big smile.

Besides Mak Ti, PDAM Surya Sembada also acknowledges the master meter system as an alternative solution for the community living in informal areas to fulfill their right to water access.

The Executive Director of PDAM Surya Sembada, Mujiaman, said “the only solution to improve water access for the people living in informal settlements is Master Meter. Innovations from multi-stakeholder are essential to support the government deliver its services and for community to access piped water.”

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