Tapping Local Innovation: Unclogging the Water and Sanitation Crisis

Tapping Local Innovation

Unclogging the Water and Sanitation Crisis

Competition Information

Competition News

Join Global Water Challenge and Ashoka Changemakers in the search for the most innovative approaches to providing access to safe drinking water and sanitation. Voting complete, winners announced below.

Update: The Coca-Cola Company commits $1 million in available grants. Read more

Welcome Letter

Dear Changemakers Community,

Learn. Connect. Invest. Global Water Challenge is dedicated to finding solutions to the water and sanitation crises. We believe that we have both the resources and the will to live in a world in which everyone can drink clean water, and use a safe toilet. It is our goal to find and encourage ideas and individuals, wherever they may be, so that every school, every clinic, every home, every community, without regard to geography and income, has access to these basic needs.

That’s why we are so excited to partner with Changemakers.net to reach out to the world’s entrepreneurs to challenge them to use their substantial talents and commitment to make the goal of universal access to safe water and sanitation a reality. We hope to learn how to make ideas even stronger, and to connect local innovators with global investors who can bring their solutions to life.

Ashoka is a citizen-sector support system for social entrepreneurs—people around the world who develop innovative solutions to the social problems that most urgently demand them. To further this goal Ashoka’s Changemakers.net website provides an online, interactive forum that encourages collaboration and discussion, along with competition, to draw out the most effective ideas.

Ashoka’s Changemakers and Global Water Challenge have partnered to open a worldwide search for ideas and projects that, when scaled-up, have the potential to transform the provision of sanitation and water. We hope you will join us. . Between January 9 and March 26, 2008, we invite you to submit your proposals.

Even if you do not offer a proposal of your own, we invite you to join the dialogue. Your experience and insights are invaluable in the creation of truly innovative ideas.

Join the online Changemakers community to make suggestions and recommend resources that will help refine and strengthen the strategies presented by competition entrants. Tell us what you’re thinking, how you see the field, where its challenges and opportunities lie.

We’ll need your help again in April 2008 to vote for 3 winners from the 12 finalists selected by our panel of judges—a group of influential leaders who bring their different strengths to solving the water and sanitation crisis.

With your help we have the potential to create sustainable change in local communities. You may already be engaged in activities that bring solutions to change in your corner of the world. Now bring this knowledge to a global community. We encourage you to invite others to the competition as well, so together we may uncover the creativity—and natural drive to innovate— within each of us.

Good luck!,

Tanvi Nagpal, Ph.D


Director, Water and Sanitation Initiatives
Global Water Challenge



Welcome to the Changemakers “Tapping Local Innovation: Unclogging the Water and Sanitation Crisis” Collaborative Competition. Ashoka’s Changemakers and Global Water Challenge have partnered to open a worldwide search for ideas that projects that, when scaled-up, have the potential to transform the provision of sanitation and water.

For more information on entering, the online review, and voting please view the competition criteria and time line below, or contact us at waterandsanitation@changemakers.net.

Eligibility Criteria


The competition will be open to all types of organizations (charitable organizations, private companies, or public entities) from all countries. We consider all entries that:

    • Reflect the theme of the competition: Tapping Local Innovation: Unclogging the Water and Sanitation Crisis. The scope of the competition is to identify innovative solutions around the water and sanitation crises. Entries are invited from organizations and individuals in all countries.
    • Are beyond the stage of idea, concept, or research, and, at a minimum, are at the demonstration stage and indicate success. While we support new ideas at every stage, and encourage their entry, our judges are only able to evaluate programs that are beyond the conceptual stage, and have demonstrated a proof of impact, even at small scale.
    • Complete the entire entry form and submit before the deadline.
    • Entries must be submitted in English or in Spanish and be complete.



Assessment Criteria


The winners of this Changemakers Collaborative Competition will be those entries that best meet the following criteria:

    Innovation: This is the knock-out test; if the work is not innovative the judges will not give it high rankings. The application must describe the systemic innovation that it is focused on. The innovation should be a unique model of change and ready for large-scale spread.
    Social Impact: It is important that the innovation has already begun to have an impact on the field it addresses. Some innovations will have proven success at a small level, while others will have scaled to engage millions of people. Regardless of the level of demonstrated impact, it is important to see that the innovation has the ability to affect the world and not just one village. This will be judged by considering the scale strategy, ability to be replicated, clear how-tos, and a clear description of how you plan to scale up the work.
    Sustainability: For an innovation to be truly effective it must have a plan for how it will acquire financial and other bases of support for the long-term. Are strong partnerships in place for it to have a ripple effect? Is there a clear financial plan in place?



Competition Deadlines, Procedures, and Rules


The phases in the competition are:

    Entry Stage – January 7, 2008 to March 26: Entries can be submitted until 6 pm Eastern US time on March 25, 2008. Online review and discussion can go on during this entire entry period. Entrants are strongly encouraged to consider feedback and edit and revise their blueprint throughout the entry period.
    Online Review and Judging – March 26 to April 22, 2008: Online review and discussion continues. The judging panel will select 7 to 15 finalists from the entry pool.
    Voting – April 23 to May 11, 2008: The Changemakers community votes online to select the three award winners from the field of finalists. The voting period will end at 6:00 EST on May11, 2008.
    Winners Announced – May12, 2008: The three finalists that receive the most votes will each receive a cash prize of US $5,000.



Participating in the competition provides the chance to receive feedback on your blueprint from fellow entrants, Changemakers staff, judges and the Changemakers community. Showcasing your blueprint and the challenges involved in creating social impact advises potential investors about how best to change funding/investing patterns for the sector and to maximize the strategic impact and effectiveness of their future investments.


Disclaimer—Compliance with Legal Restrictions



Ashoka complies fully with all U.S. laws and regulations, including Office of Foreign Assets Control regulations, export control, and anti-money laundering laws. All grants will be awarded subject to compliance with such laws. Ashoka will not make any grant if it finds that to do so would be unlawful. This may prohibit awards in certain countries and/or to certain individuals or entities. All recipients will comply with these laws to the extent they are applicable to such recipients. No recipient will take any action that would cause Ashoka to violate any laws. Additionally, Ashoka will not make any grant to a company involved in the promotion of tobacco use.




Discovery Framework

Tapping Local Innovation:

Unclogging the Water and Sanitation Crisis




Principles of Innovation


Main Barriers to Change:

Policies distort pricing, lower profits and lead to misuse of water and waste
Public information alone doesn't change behaviors

Limited focus on long-term impact
Lack of access to equity/credit in the sector
Participation can limit accountability, rather than solve service provision

Value-added services mean added business income

Individual and business level


Kickstart's Super Money Maker Pressure Pump, Kenya
In response to demand by farmers for a pump that can push water uphill (rather than paying for pumping and then transport), Kickstart's new pump can draw water from 7m below ground, and can irrigate up to 2 acres of land. Farmers use this not only to irrigate their own crops, but also to sell to others at a profit.

Hindustan Lever's Pureit, India
One-stop water purification unit to remove parasites, pesticides, bacteria and odor, without electricity or chlorination. Pitched as time-saving device for working families, with door-to-door sales demonstrations.

Barefoot College Solar Engineers, India
Barefoot College trains rural unemployed youth as well as semi-literate and literate rural women, as barefoot solar engineers. They install solar home lighting systems in their villages and produce solar lanterns. Many women also install and maintain hand pumps, rainwater tanks and pipelines to provide easy access to drinking water in extreme heat and cold. This provides a steady source of income for the women.

WaterHealth International, US
UV-based water purification and disinfection technology platform is modular to provide high quality drinking water. Currently increasing distribution in 10+ countries.

Association of Private Water Operators, Uganda and S. Africa
Forming an umbrella association of private water supply operators facilitates delivery of high quality, reliable, environmentally sustainable, economically efficient, and satisfactory water and sanitation services.
Move people up the sanitation ladder

Individual and community level

 

Trevor Mulaudzi, South Africa
He uses an initial toilet-cleaning project to help schools raise funds and awareness about health and sanitation. Schools purchase the cleaning materials necessary for the initial clean up and continuing maintenance from Trevor. He convinces parents to become more actively involved in the school through this project and then encourages the school to employ some of these parents as cleaners and pay them a small wage for this service.
   

Sulabh Sanitation, India
Runs more than 6,000 community and 100 railway sanitation complexes with a 24-hr supply of soap & water. Low-cost toilet requires only two liters of water to flush and does not require scavengers or outside maintenance.
Caretaker who lives onsite has vested interest in clean and appropriate usage. Indian Railways is considering contracting Sulabh for all stations.
Increase accountability through design for the long-term

Sector level



Laxman Singh, India
Trains rural youth to design and implement locale-specific blueprints for water conservation in drought-prone districts of Rajasthan. Validates tribal traditions for planning around droughts.
     


Ravindranath, India
Disaster Preparedness Committee in flood-prone Assam developed the Early Warning Network System to predict possible flash floods. Volunteers regularly measure water levels and relay the information to alert rescue teams in downstream districts.

Connect solutions to the housing & finance sectors

Sector level


Ministry of Health, El Salvador
In cooperation with several NGOs, installed solar urine-diverting toilets on rooftops, providing an individual, home-based solution. In some communities the NGO provided materials and labor, while in others, the NGO provided materials and taught community how to build the toilet. May coordinate with Agriculture department to use urine as fertilizer.

Water Partners International / Gramalaya, India
A sanitation microfinance pilot project with NGOs in Tamil Nadu, India, earn repayment rates greater than 90% for financing cluster latrines in rural areas and urban slums.

Public-Private Partnerships, Ivory Coast
CREPA, an NGO, worked with the local water utility to pre-finance water connection fees as a loan for all 300 households in a neighborhood, and trained them to mobilize household savings to repay their loan and ongoing water bills. The micro loans, backed by UNDP, were paid back in 17 months and this example is now being replicated in Ouagadougou.

Community Lead Infrastructure Financing Facility (CLIFF), UK
CLIFF accepts applications from organized slum communities to take out loans, helps them petition for new housing and land titles from the government and build new housing, which includes water and sanitation.
 

Financing for the new consumer

Individual, business and sector level



Juan Carlos Luna, Peru
In response to scarce water access and unreliable sanitation in Lima's poor areas, citizens offer to pay 40% of project costs into Carlos' waste management program. It offers different technological choices: a dry toilet that separates liquid from solid waste and recycles each; then families can combine the dry toilet with filtering and cleaning of their gray water. They also can convert the gray water into clean water available for the community to use in irrigation of public parks and gardens. The gray water can also be used in urban agriculture projects, with waste being used as fertilizer and for soil enrichment.
   

UN Habitat, Lao PDR
Invested in a revolving fund for neighborhoods to connect piped water directly to individual households, which paid a monthly charge for the connection and bills. The water is for drinking and for low-flush toilets. The fees return to the revolving fund for use by another neighborhood.
 


Participate   • Discuss &nbsp • Read the Overall Framework of the Competition



Barriers:

  • Policies distort pricing, lower profits, and misuse water and waste: Distortions in the water sector hide in many guises: international development assistance for disaster relief, politicians providing water as patronage, the promise of "free services" from nonprofit organizations, and subsidized agricultural and industrial water use, which are ultimately unsustainable. Subsidies hurt both consumers and the environment because they discourage water conservation, which can lead to water scarcity. Those that offer water services must compete with free, or underpriced water, which many people think of as their only option, despite poor quality and low reliability. The low cost of water, and apathy toward better services, also means that many more innovations exist for water treatment than for waste disposal, which could limit the contamination of the water. Artificially depressed water prices hurt entrepreneurs as well by limiting their profitability. Tiny profit margins can mean entrepreneurs don't commit to healthy or environmentally sound solutions unless they're guaranteed a large volume of customers. In addition, water providers that fill in the gaps in water-scarce areas are rarely accountable for water-quality standards. Small-scale water providers in water-scarce urban areas charge too much for poor quality water. Meanwhile, rural residents don't have water service or access at any price. Although all residents-rich and poor, rural and urban-are willing to pay for the convenience of a nearby tap connection, most think of water itself as a free good because of current pricing schemes. As a result, consumers tend to use water in ways that are irresponsible.

  • Public information alone doesn't change behavior: The health benefits of clean water and safe sanitation practices, however clearly documented, have not persuaded many households in developing countries to change their day-to-day sanitation practices. Public health campaigns may improve knowledge, but not necessarily change behavior (consider the challenge of getting households to use bednets to prevent malaria, or other seemingly simple practices). Framing a behavior as the 'right thing to do' implicitly chastises people for the way they live. People respond far more to messages of personal economic benefit or social status.

  • Limited focus on long-term impact: In vibrant business markets, companies that are first to innovate quickly contend with imitators. This early competition generates consumer demand. And to capture that demand, companies scale up the availability of their product and generate new product uses and features. But when water and sanitation projects are created or managed by non-governmental organizations, they tend to focus on opportunities for poverty reduction rather than strategies for long-term business development. As a result, NGOs may not know enough about consumer preference or focus sufficiently on profitability for their ideas to be scaled-up without reliance on subsidies. Support for pilot projects rarely leads to a permanent service. In addition, the simple act of framing water treatment technologies or sanitation products as pilot projects limits thinking and planning for long-term results and commitment.

  • Lack of access to equity/credit in the sector: Lack of access to equity or credit inhibits individual entrepreneurs who want to create a service, and communities that may want to purchase new services. Financiers have not considered the income-generating opportunities in the sector for individuals. Banks may not want to lend because they consider the water and sanitation sector to be a high-cost, low-return investment, or simply because they don't have the resources to assess the risks and returns for small deals. Local entrepreneurs need services that would help them quantify these risks and document their returns. They also need services to cut through bureaucratic red tape so they can earn quicker, higher returns on their water or waste management solutions. And for communities needing funds to buy new services, finance institutions cannot assume that microcredit is the answer in all cases. For instance, urban residents may not want to be in the typical joint liability group that microfinance institutions require, because they cannot afford time away from their jobs. Thus, different financing options may need to expand to increase access but cover risks in this sector.

  • Participation can limit accountability and effectiveness, rather than improve service provision: Collective ownership and management do not work in all situations. Although local governance may seem more responsive to local needs, treating communities as entrepreneurs may actually increase transaction costs and therefore decrease service levels. For instance, participants in local water cooperatives may not invest sufficient time in training and organization to deliver multiple-use water appropriately. Also, local boards may lose so much time in water access requests to regional water managers that they are slower to deliver water. Similarly, deciding that everyone will clean and maintain toilets may mean that no one takes responsibility. To this end, some development experts caution against romanticizing collective action for service provision and maintenance. Community involvement and ownership are crucial to success, but it is naive to assume that the poor have unlimited time to plan and participate, or unlimited desire to learn to manage something unwieldy. Competitive markets that provide choice, which fuels more attentive customer service, can provide better services at lower costs.


Principles of Innovation: Efficient services delivered to the consumer, and earned income for the entrepreneur

  • Value-added services mean additional business income (Individual and business level*): Entrepreneurs can create profitable businesses based on water and sanitation provision services as long as they are seen by customers to directly improve wellbeing by raising earned incomes, improving health, or dramatically saving time. Entrepreneurs can add value by delivering services, such as providing water that is safe for drinking so that households do not need to buy point-of-use filters or other household-based treatments, or use valuable firewood for boiling water. When those services increase income significantly for entrepreneurs, they can scale-up their businesses and demonstrate new models for water and sanitation provision. In this way, both the consumer and entrepreneur graduate to more convenient, cost-effective, and sustainable solutions.

  • Move people up the water & sanitation ladder (Individual level*): Although constructing a pit latrine is not a long-term solution, it can be an important first step in a coordinated effort to introduce new sanitation practices, especially if the latrines are built ecologically and are regularly emptied and maintained. Consider how a businessperson could earn income by delivering new sanitation options to communities, just as salespeople graduate users of consumer products to more sophisticated, sometimes healthier options. In this case, it may be easier to shift a neighborhood, rather than just an individual household, from pit latrines to urine-diverting toilets to septic systems. And it doesn't end with household solutions. Entrepreneurs need to generate demand for investment in a networked sewage system. This means coordinating small-scale sanitation or water providers with the government to move neighborhoods up the ladder. In addition, sanitation solutions should fit with the local setting. For instance, a small, enclosed toilet may make sense in a dense urban area, but seem unsanitary to a rural farmer in a village with ample space. Total Sanitation programs, whereby communities mount active monitoring campaigns against open defecation, tend to work in more hierarchical societies, where everyone knows each other's roles and responsibilities.

  • Increase accountability through design for the long-term (Sector level*): The current public sector approach that disconnects water delivery from sanitation has actually undermined public sector investments in water. Many more people have access to a tap than do to a toilet, as sewerage investments lag far behind water pipes. Broken water pipes that run next to pit latrines and overflowing septic tanks carry contaminated water into homes. But a solution may be emerging out of necessity. Communities with limited resources have a strong incentive to make their water system design as good as possible, so that they have to devote only minimal resources to operating and maintaining the system. Designs that divert sanitation disposal to points outside residential areas, and that provide easy access to water at multiple points within the community are more likely to remain in use over the next 5-10 years. Investors who help develop a complete system - from design to construction to system management - can claim the full value of the system. They can claim not just the financial return on investment, but also the economic benefit of bringing long-term savings and efficiency to a community.

  • Connect solutions to the finance and housing sectors (Sector level*): People who don't have enough space in their home to install a latrine won't do so. And people who have insecure ownership rights over their home will invest in it even less (and neither will the government for sewerage or water connections). Housing and sanitation entrepreneurs could work together to find low-cost ways for the urban poor to own or rent land, or to build low-cost housing with a small-scale sanitation option as part of the design. Coordination is already emerging in select communities, by connecting vulnerable residential areas with water and sanitation products. Financial entrepreneurs should consider how opportunities in rural areas differ from urban ones. In dense urban dwellings, microfinance institutions may be willing to lend for housing stock improvements that add a toilet and a sustainable water connection, which could also earn the dweller income. In rural areas, other financiers may offer loans to create multiple-use water systems that provide both agricultural and household water access.

  • Financing for the new consumer (Individual, business and sector level*): Expanding the range of investment options in water and sanitation could shift the water market away from a quasi-monopoly, and in turn cultivate new customers. Consider how the financing itself can help develop customers, by making them stakeholders in the service. Water co-operatives could dedicate a portion of user fees to upgrading services; or small monthly payments could ensure continued usage of toilets in a way that fee-for-service payments may not. Financiers can also think beyond microcredit toward savings products and other options that tap consumers' willingness to pay.

    *: Individual level indicates changes that target individual consumers and their behavior. Business level involves the creation of a robust market of products and services, either with a new kind of market-based financing. Sector level involves solutions that will systematically change the way water and sanitation services are delivered globally.



    Short Descriptions of Mosaic Cases


    1.   KickStart


      Country: Kenya


      Website:
      www.kickstart.org/tech/technologies/micro-irrigation.html



      Mosaic Principle: Value-added services mean additional business income


      Mosaic Barrier: Policies distort pricing, lower profits and lead to misuse of water and waste

      By enabling farmers to pump out water directly at source and push water uphill-thereby eliminating the need to pay for pumping and transporting water-KickStart's Super MoneyMaker Pressure Pump is transforming Kenya's subsistence farms into highly profitable enterprises. Exploiting the pump's ability to draw water up from 23 feet (7 m) and irrigate up to 2 acres of land, thousands of farmers are using the gadget not only to irrigate their own crops, but are selling the water to others at a profit. Incomes have increased as much as ten-fold for many of these "farmerpreneurs."

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    2.   Hindustan Lever's Pureit


      Country: India


      Website:
      www.hulpureit.com/htmls/about.html



      Mosaic Principle: Value-added services mean additional business income


      Mosaic Barrier: Public information alone doesn't change behaviors

      Hindustan Unilever's Pureit water purifier offers in-home all-in-one water purifying services that remove bacteria, parasites, pesticides and odor without dependence on electricity, gas, running water or chlorination. The unit is pitched as a time and money saving device that's tailored for working families. It guarantees safety, boasts of being easy enough for a child to use, and emphasizes convenience of use by being portable. Moreover, the practice of door-to-door demonstrations functions as an effective marketing strategy.

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    3.   Barefoot College Solar Engineers


      Country: India


      Website:
      www.barefootcollege.org/prog_rwh.htm



      Mosaic Principle: Value-added services mean additional business income


      Mosaic Barrier: Limited focus on long-term impact

      The Barefoot College, located in Tilonia in Rajasthan, India, works with local communities to engage them in setting up and maintaining systems for providing easy access to drinking water. Several villages now benefit from community piped water supply systems, designed, planned and implemented entirely by the village people. These communities pay a small monthly fee for this connection. The College has trained over 1,000 hand pump mechanics to carry out all repairs for the 45,000-plus hand pumps in Rajasthan. There are almost 50 women mechanics in this team. A number of women have been trained as barefoot engineers, to fabricate and construct overhead water tanks, having a capacity of holding 100,000 liters of water. Several women are now equipped to plan, supervise and implement a drought proofing initiative of desiltation of village ponds. These activities provide much-needed steady income for women and helps strengthen their positions in these deeply patriarchal communities.

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    4.   WaterHealth International


      Country: U.S.


      Website:
      www.waterhealth.com/water-solutions/project-financing.php


      Mosaic Principle: Value-added services mean additional business income


      Mosaic Barrier: Lack of access to equity/credit in the sector

      WaterHealth International is ensuring that underserved populations avail of its UV-based water purification technology by using a unique business approach that includes credit facilities for financing for the purchase and installation of the systems. This makes it possible to deliver products for safe, clean water, even to communities traditionally considered "unreachable." User fees for treated water are used to repay loans and to cover the expenses of operating and maintaining the equipment and facility. WaterHealth hires members of the communities to conduct the day-to-day maintenance of these "micro-utilities," thus creating employment and building capacity, as well as generating entrepreneurial opportunities for local residents to provide related services, such as sales and distribution of the purified water to outlying areas. Moreover, because the facilities are owned by the communities in which they are installed, the user fees become attractive sources of revenue for the community after repayment of loans.

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    5.   Association of Private Water Operators


      Country: Uganda and S. Africa


      Website:
      siteresources.worldbank.org/EXTWSS/Resources/337301-1147283795581/APWOHarrisonMutikanga.pdf



      Mosaic Principle: Value-added services mean additional business income


      Mosaic Barrier: Participation can limit accountability, rather than solve service provision

      In Uganda, a move by private water supply operators to form an umbrella association is benefiting the urban communities they serve by enhancing the efficiency of urban water supply services. The formation of the Association Private Water Operators (APWO) is improving the continuity and success of private sector participation in urban water supply by facilitating efficient operations, sharing of experiences and giving a single voice to operators. APWO-Uganda has several goals geared toward uniting its members in the delivery of high quality, reliable, environmentally sustainable, economically efficient, and satisfactory water and sanitation services to users. Others countries like South Africa are also following this model.

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    6.   Trevor Mulaudzi


      Country: South Africa


      Mosaic Principle:
      Move people up the sanitation ladder


      Mosaic Barrier: Public information alone doesn't change behaviors

      In South Africa, Ashoka Fellow Trevor Mulaudzi uses a school toilet clean-up project to raise standards of hygeine and sanitation both in schools and in the community. Mulaudzi convinces parents by involving them in the initial clean-up project and then encouraging the school to hire some of these parents as cleaners, thereby generating much-needed employment. He hooks schools to the project by making it an income-generator: he supplies the schools with toilet paper and cleaning materials at a low cost which the schools sell to parents and the rest of the community for a higher price. In this way, the schools generate income while also building community awareness and contributing to the improvement of sanitation in the home.

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    7.   Sulabh Sanitation


      Country: India


      Website:
      www.sulabhinternational.org



      Mosaic Principle: Move people up the sanitation ladder


      Mosaic Barrier: Participation can limit accountability, rather than solve service provision

      Sulabh International is operating and maintaining more than 6,000 community toilet complexes in some 1,100 towns and cities across India, and one in Bhutan. These low-cost toilets require just 2 liters flush water, and the toilet blocks are equipped with electricity and a 24-hour water supply. Soap is provided free for hand washing. Users pay a small fee that goes toward the wages of an on-site caretaker who is charged with cleaning and maintaining the facilities. Sulabh is also operating and maintaining about 100 such complexes at important railway stations. Impressed with Sulabh's efficiency and cost-effective methodology, the Indian Railways is considering handing over the management of its entire sanitation services to this civil sector organization.

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    8.   Laxman Singh


      Country: India


      Website:
      www.sulabhinternational.org



      Mosaic Principle: Increase accountability through design for the long-term


      Mosaic Barrier: Policies distort pricing, lower profits and lead to misuse of water and waste

      In drought prone Rajasthan, India, Ashoka Fellow Laxman Singh is helping communities to ensure water security by encouraging them to remember and implement traditional water conservation and natural resource management systems. He trains youth groups to design locale-specific blueprints for water conservation, founded on traditional knowledge systems of the area. Singh is successfully transferring control of water resources to rural youth and citizens, replacing dysfunctional centralized government planning with the self-reliance of local people. Several other citizen sector organizations have adopted his model, and the idea is spreading across the region.

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    9.   Ravindranath


      Country: India


      Mosaic Principle:
      Increase accountability through design for the long-term


      Mosaic Barrier: Participation can limit accountability, rather than solve service provision

      In India, Ashoka Fellow Ravindranath organizes villages and communities in Assam's flood-prone areas to predict, prepare for, and cope with, the deluges that regluarly destroy homes and livelihoods. His Disaster Preparedness Committee has developed an Early Warning Network System to predict possible flash floods. Trained volunteers, working in a coordinated manner, regluarly measure water levels and relay the information to downstream areas, thereby alerting local evacuation and rescue team in those villages and giving communities adequate time to save lives and reduce loss. His model is being replicated across north-east India.

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    10.   Ministry of Health


      Country: El Salvador


      Website:
      www.mspas.gob.sv/p_salud_ambiental6.asp



      Mosaic Principle: Increase accountability through design for the long-term


      Mosaic Barrier: Policies distort pricing, lower profits and lead to misuse of water and waste

      The Salvador Government is providing poor homeowners with an individual home-based sanitation solution by installing rooftop solar-run urine diverting toilets. The Ministry of Health (MOH) runs the program in partnership with several civil sector organizations. Different models of financing are used depending on what best suits the client community. In some communities the NGO has provided both the materials and labor, whereas in others, it has only provided materials and information on how to build the toilet, while labor is offered by the future users of the toilets. The MOH has established the regulations for the construction and maintenance of units and these regulations are regularly updated to reflect improvement and developments in the technology. Plans are on the anvil to collaborate with the Agriculture department to utilize the run-off urine as fertilizer

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    11.   Water Partners International / Gramalaya


      Country: India


      Website:
      water.org/waterpartners.aspx?pgID=1015



      Mosaic Principle: Connect solutions to the housing & finance sectors


      Mosaic Barrier: Public information alone doesn't change behaviors

      Through its Water Credit Initiative, WaterPartners International is providing microfinance for installing water and sanitation systems to poor communities who do not have access to traditional credit markets. By providing these groups with the credit tools they need, WaterPartners is enabling them to take charge of and design solutions to their water and sanitation needs. In India, WaterPartners provided loans for safe drinking water and household toilet facilities for urban slum residents. Loans were disbursed by WaterPartners' local implementing partner, Gramalaya. The latter teamed up a local micro-finance institution, BASIX, in order to develop the infrastructure they needed to make the loan distributions. BASIX educated Gramalaya on the qualifications for loan eligibility and helped them to develop financial systems to process the loans. The approach has been very successful so far, with a 90 percent repayment rate.

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    12.   Public-Private Partnerships


      Organization: Centre Régional pour l'Eau Potable et l'Assainissement à faible coût (CREPA)


      Country: Ivory Coast


      Website:
      www.reseaucrepa.org



      Mosaic Principle: Connect solutions to the housing & finance sectors


      Mosaic Barrier: Limited focus on long-term impact

      CREPA Côte d'Ivoire (a civil sector organization) works with the local public water utility service to pre-finance water connection fees as a loan to all households in a neighborhood, then trains the community to mobilize household savings to repay the loan and pay ongoing water bills. CREPA first arranges micro-loans for households to get water connections. A fund is created to continue the support to the connection fees and a household committee is set up. To reimburse the funds, a box is installed in each user household into which 100 CFA must be deposited everyday. The household committee carries out weekly checks to monitor this. At the end of the month, the household pays the water bill and the leftover money is used toward repaying the loan for the connection. The project is all set to be replicated in other areas as well.

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    13.   Community Lead Infrastructure Financing Facility (CLIFF)


      Country: UK


      Website:
      www.homeless-international.org



      Mosaic Principle: Connect solutions to the housing & finance sectors


      Mosaic Barrier: Lack of access to equity/credit in the sector

      CLIFF helps slum communities to execute slum development solutions - including installing and/or upgrading water sanitation facilities-by first providing loans and then leveraging additional loan finances for the communities from large financial institutions. The original CLIFF loans enable communities to demonstrate their capacity to implement financially viable projects, which can potentially be used to change the policy and practice of financial institutions. When financial institutions can visit and assess projects that are underway it helps them to develop confidence in the quality that can be produced through a community-driven process. CLIFF can also be used to share financial risks with other financial institutions, with all parties contributing loan financing. Sometimes, when financial institutions require additional security, CLIFF offers the needed guarantees. As more financial institutions become involved in the schemes, their confidence in lending to community driven projects increases.

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    14.   Juan Carlos Luna


      Country: Peru


      Website:
      www.chez.com/cenca/ingles.html



      Mosaic Principle: Financing for the new consumer


      Mosaic Barrier: Policies distort pricing, lower profits and lead to misuse of water and waste

      Ashoka Fellow Juan Carlos Luna offers simple water management technologies to slum neighborhoods and rural areas in Peru. These inexpensive technologies - that homeowners contribute upto 40 percent of -promote community water conservation and waste management, help prevent human waste dumping, and have the added benefit of turning gray water into usable water for public parks. Luna works with government water and sanitation engineers to introduce them to these technologies. Simultaneously, he has designed new policy approaches for the government which involve greater community participation which ensures that local policy is generated largely by community members themselves instead of being imposed by government officials. This allows communities to build their own water management infrastructure through small investment increments and therefore feel some ownership and responsibility.

      Go back to the mosaic




    15.   UN Habitat


      Country: Lao PDR


      Website:
      www.unhabitat.org/pmss/



      Mosaic Principle: Financing for the new consumer


      Mosaic Barrier: Lack of access to equity/credit in the sector

      In Lao PDR, UN Habitat has invested in a revolving fund for neighborhoods to connect piped water directly to individual households. The water is used for drinking and for low-flush toilets. Each home pays a fee for the connection and for usage. These fees feed back into the revolving fund, which is then used by another neighborhood. Before the intervention is rolled out, an aggressive awareness raising campaign is set in motion, followed by a rigorous neighborhood survey to determine the community's willingness and ability to pay for the service.

      Go back to the mosaic



Judges Panel

Ed Cain

Vice President-Grant Programs, Hilton Foundation

Ian Callaghan

Director, Microfinance Group, Morgan Stanley

Sanjay Gupta

Chief Medical Correspondent, CNN

Tanvi Nagpal

Director, Water and Sanitation Initiatives, Global Water Challenge