Bridges To Prosperity

Local Private Sector

A community-led approach to rural transportation

Local Expertise

A principle tenet of our work is that we believe the rural access problem is solvable within our lifetime, but that we can’t (and shouldn’t) do it alone. Scaled rural transport programs achieved within any meaningful timeline will be led by government and implemented by the private sector in each geography. Bridges to Prosperity invests in technical advisory services to ultimately support governments in rural access delivery to achieve their goals, and in addition to networked infrastructure planning, resource mobilization, and standards development, that support requires a simultaneous investment in resources for education and capacity building for technical and vocational training institutions and local engineering and construction entities.

Partnership Case Study

Initiative: TRAIL (Transformative Rural Access for Improved Livelihoods) Ethiopia 

Partner: Private sector entities throughout Ethiopia, in partnership with Helvetas and the Government of Ethiopia 

Approach: The overall objective of TRAIL Ethiopia is to create the enabling environment for a sustained national program to address rural access throughout the nation in partnership with Helvetas and the Government of Ethiopia. The project includes the construction of 150 trail bridges across six regions, an extensive research and evaluation effort to support long-term scaling in Ethiopia and beyond, and a robust capacity-building program directed at the private sector. This work includes training and qualification of local consultants in the design and construction of trail bridges, training for fabricators in the manufacture of quality components, and the development of curriculum and courses for vocational training centers and universities that ultimately create the pipeline of qualified professionals for private sector actors in the short and long-term. 

Results and Impact: To date, the TRAIL Ethiopia program has provided hands-on training for dozens of private sector entities in the design and safe construction of rural trail bridges on schedule and budget. Additionally, more than 15 bridges have been completed by the private sector, and regional governments have committed well over two million USD to the tendering and constructing of trail bridges through the private sector over the next year. Additionally, seven universities and eight polytechnical colleges have created a knowledge-sharing network focused on rural access development.