A strategic approach to the ecological problem in Copceac village

According to the latest data, each household in the village of Copceac has at least 2 household pits to collect food waste and waste-water. Their large number and incorrect wastewater management have affected over 70% of the village’s territory, endangering groundwater quality and public health. Most residents are interested in having access to public sewerage services and agree to get involved and even contribute financially to the development of this service. But the village budget would not have been enough to implement such an ambitious project.

It is well known that the village of Copceac, thanks to the active involvement of local public administration, but also community mobilization has managed to create partnerships with various international organizations, thus bringing substantial investments in the development of the village infrastructure. Since 2018, the village has a modern treatment plant, installed thanks to the joint effort of several development partners from Germany, Belgium, and the Slovak Republic. At the end of 2019, the local council decided that the capital investments of the LPA should be oriented specifically towards the development of the sewerage network. If at the end of 2018 in the village of Copceac only 45% of the population had access to the water supply service and only 5% to the sewerage service, then today 80% of the locals have access to the aqueduct and 15% to the sewerage service and sanitation.

The development of the sewerage service in Copceac village is a more complex project and is carried out in several stages. The first stage involved the modernization of the sewerage network inherited from Soviet times, at the second stage of the project all public institutions were connected. Currently, about 300 people are connected to the sewerage service, and by 2021 Copceac plans to have 3-4 times more beneficiaries, ie about 30-45% of the village population.

In the period 2021-2023, the village of Copceac will implement a project aimed to improve the sewerage service, with the support of the Project “Mă Implic”, financed by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) and implemented by SKAT Consulting. Following the signed agreement, the LPA will benefit from funding (maximum 65,000 CHF), consulting, and capacity building services. The Project “Mă Implic” will help the LPA and the service provider not only to improve the infrastructure but also to develop long-term approaches to keep this infrastructure in good shape and to have sustainable models for financing the provision of services. In our work, we will ensure that local citizens, employees of LPAs, NGOs, economic agents are actively involved in modernizing public services in the community and especially that the less advantaged have equal access to these services.

Thus, by improving the public sewerage service in the locality, the health and well-being of the locals will be ensured, the local ecosystem will be preserved, and finally, new development opportunities will be created for local businesses. The citizens of Copceac village, who participated in the first mapping exercise, mentioned that they are extremely happy that they will finally be able to live civilized and to arrange sanitary blocks in their houses.