Photo Credit: Evidence Action
Low-cost chlorine dispensers to provide safe water to 3.2 million people in rural Uganda
Washington, D.C. – February 4, 2015. The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and the Skoll Foundation announced a joint investment of $2 million in Evidence Action to scale up its Dispensers for Safe Water program, a proven and highly cost effective approach for providing clean water to rural communities.
The investment is the third of its kind by the Innovation Investment Alliance, a Global Development Alliance between the Skoll Foundation and USAID that is supported by the global humanitarian agency Mercy Corps, which is focused on scaling the impact of proven social entrepreneurs.
Dispensers for Safe Water installs innovative low-cost chlorine dispensers directly at the water source in rural communities in Uganda, Kenya and Malawi.
The $2 million investment by the Innovation Investment Alliance will fund the installation of 10,100 chlorine dispensers in Uganda, and provide 3.2 million more Ugandans with access to sustainable, safe water services by the end of 2015.
In Uganda, just 10 percent of the population has access to piped water and approximately 23,000 people die of diarrheal diseases annually. Children under five are especially vulnerable. Across Africa, diarrheal diseases are one of the leading causes of childhood mortality.
Dispensers for Safe Water combines rigorously-tested design with an innovative carbon credit financing model. Dispensers are placed at local water sources for people to easily add a precise dose of chlorine to their water. Dispensers cost approximately 50 cents per user per year at scale. Evidence Action finances ongoing operations through carbon credits generated because people do not need to boil water with fossil fuel to make it safe to drink.
Evidence Action joins a select group of social enterprises funded by the USAID-Skoll Innovation Investment Alliance. Previous recipients include Imazon that uses satellite imagery to help track and reduce deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon, and VisionSpring, a social enterprise using an innovative business model to provide affordable and appropriate eyeglasses and vision care to people living at the base of the economic pyramid.
The USAID-Skoll Innovation Investment Alliance pairs USAID’s expertise in scaling development solutions with Skoll’s experience investing in, connecting, and celebrating social entrepreneurs and the innovators who help them drive solutions to the world’s most pressing problems. Mercy Corps joined the Alliance in September 2012 to help USAID identify and evaluate organizations for funding and assess their impact in solving pressing global challenges.
USAID: Kathy Hunt, Senior Partnership Advisor, USAID, firstname.lastname@example.org, +1 202 712 0076
Skoll Foundation: Suzana Grego, Director of Communications, email@example.com, +1 650 331 1021
Mercy Corps: Carol Skowron, Senior Program Officer, firstname.lastname@example.org, +1 503 896 5861
Evidence Action: Katrin Verclas, Director of Communications and Advocacy, email@example.com, +1 202 780 5688