Corporate Social Responsibility

CSR Partner: Water For People

Harnessing technology to deliver safe, clean water

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Millions of people worldwide lack clean water, which can lead to illness, missed school and work, and even death. While many organizations are working to improve access to clean water, the failure rate is high. With grant support from Cisco, Water For People uses the power of technology to develop more effective and long-lasting solutions.

Who: Local programs confront a global challenge

Water For People believes that collaboration and information sharing are key to improving water and sanitation. Its goal is to deliver safe, drinkable water to people in 30 districts in 9 countries serving 4 million people.

  • About 800 million people, or one-ninth of the world’s population, lack access to clean water.
  • A child dies from a water-related illness every 21 seconds.
  • Failure rates for water projects are as high as 60 percent in some areas.
  • Water For People works with local organizations in Bolivia, Guatemala, Honduras, India, Malawi, Nicaragua, Peru, Rwanda, and Uganda

How: Data collection and analysis improves business practices

Using smart phone and web-based technology, developed with Cisco support, Water For People monitors water investments by collecting and analyzing data from remote and difficult-to-reach field locations. The data helps increase the water delivery sector’s competency, accountability, and transparency.

  • Field Level Operations Watch (FLOW) is a mobile application that collects, manages, and analyzes data on the condition of water service distribution points.
  • The Re-Imagine Reporting (RIR)* platform offers a comprehensive view of what is happening in country programs over time.
  • 10 years of guaranteed monitoring and evaluation of water projects ensures stability.
  • Improved efficiencies mean that water and sanitation systems can eventually be sustained by local governments without further assistance.

Impact Multiplied

With the development of FLOW and RIR* technology, better partnerships are being developed with district governments, toward the goal of providing 100 percent water and sanitation coverage in 30 districts around the world.

  • Since being transferred to the Avko Foundation in 2012, FLOW has been scaled as an open-source tool (with Cisco support) and is used by 69 organizations in 28 countries. It has benefited more than 3.5 million people.
  • RIR* allows Water For People to build better partnerships with local governments because they can show how funding is being used.
  • 75% of residents in Water For People target communities in India have access to reliable water and sanitation.
  • 196,356 people gained access to improved water, 108,393 to sanitation, and 278,752 people received hygiene education in 2014.

* Re-Imagine Reporting (RIR) is being redesigned and will be named ER Tracker in 2015.