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Water for Rural Development in Tunisia

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has predicted that the Middle East and North Africa will be the two regions most affected by climate change in the upcoming decades. In Tunisia specifically, urban and rural populations face inequality in terms of access to and purification of clean water. Since the Tunisian revolution in 2011, the political and economic situation of the country has been unstable and is in need of support. Currently, agriculture is the key sector to generate and create jobs, and the appropriate management of water is an essential element to ensure a sustainable economic future.

Therefore, this project aims to utilize the opportunities in the agricultural sector to ensure job security as well as stimulate economic growth in a green and inclusive manner. In doing so, the project aims to work with small-scale farmers to adapt climate resilience throughout the agricultural sector. Additionally, this project will create jobs to mitigate the large percentage of youth unemployment, and give particular attention to the inclusion of women. The project will be based on the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals in Tunisia—specifically Goals 2, 5, 6, and 8. It emphasizes Integrated Water Resources Management, water demand management, protection against overexploitation, reuse of water resources, and sustainable agriculture with low input.

In consultation with the Tunisian Union for Agriculture and Fisheries (UTAP), a selection of managerial good practices, maintenance, and conservation of land and water resources will be documented as educational material. Ultimately, this project will train up to 60 GDA (Agricultural Development Groups) members over the course of 12 months. This project will serve as a pilot to be replicated and expanded upon later based on its success.