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2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit

WaterAid

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Community & Neighborhood Development, Economic Development, International, International Development, International Economic Development, International Relief, Microfinance

Mission:

WaterAid transforms lives by improving access to safe water, hygiene and sanitation in the world''s poorest communities. We work with partners and influence decision-makers to maximize our impact.

Results: Since 1981, WaterAid has helped 24.9 million people gain access to water. That's 24.9 million more healthy and independent people in the world. 24.9 million more people contributing to the economic vitality of the community. Behind these numbers lie the stories of how individual lives have been transformed in some of the world's poorest communities. Read more at http://www.wateraid.org/us/the-water-story/our-impact.

Target demographics: Marginalized populations and communities in remote and neglected areas, as well as in urban areas.

Direct beneficiaries per year: 312,000 households gain access to clean water; 405,000 households with sanitation and delivered over 8.5M to WaterAid programs around the world.

Geographic areas served: Sub-Saharan Africa, Asia, Latin & Central America and the Asia/ Pacific region.

Programs: We bring over 30 years of expertise to poor communities that need the ‘know-how’ and equipment to set-up, operate and maintain their water and sanitation services for the long-term. Our programs are practical, low-cost and sustainable. To date WaterAid has helped 24.9 million people gain access to water.

Community Stories

29 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Where to begin!? I volunteered for WaterAid for 6 months last year and had an incredible experience working for this organization that makes such meaningful contributions to the international community. WaterAid works globally to provide and ensure sustainable, integrated, and appropriate solutions to water, sanitation, and hygiene education. The employees of WaterAid have a unparalleled passion and dedication to the mission. They work tirelessly and professionally to make WaterAid the incredible organization that it is. Worthy cause, passionate employees, legitimate measurement and evaluation, RESULTS! What more could you want?

4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've studied public health in an academic environment, but only through volunteering at WaterAid did I grasp the larger complexity of such global issues. One of the aspects I admire most about this organization is its integrated approach toward solving the safe water crisis, as water, sanitation, and hygiene are indelibly linked with all other aspects of life. Everyone I've met at WaterAid is exceptionally dedicated and sincere, and I'm inspired to continue supporting their work and cause.

3 Aislinn G.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

WaterAid is a truly dedicated, professional, and compassionate organization that provides so many people in need with what many of us take for granted: Clean Water. Sanitation. Hygiene. Knowledge. Not only does it provide clean water, but it provides it in a sustainable way, AND educates the people who they are helping on the importance of sanitation for their health and overall well-being. I interned with WaterAid in the summer of 2010 and was so motivated that I wrote my senior thesis on the role clean water, sanitation, and hygiene have on reducing poverty, empowering women, and keeping children healthy in impoverished communities. I continued on in the field and have continued to love and support WaterAid over the last four years! MUCH LOVE TO WATERAID!!

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I volunteered for this nonprofit this summer, and I can vouch for it 100%. The people there are genuinely dedicated to making sure communities get clean water while still being self-sufficient, and take care that every dollar possible of every donation goes to their cause. They're appreciative of any and all help, and send responses to all the donations they receive. On my last day volunteering, they gave me a thank you card in which every person in the office wrote a message.

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

WaterAid is truly a wonderful organization. I have been one of their monthly donors for about a year now. I love the concept behind WaterAid's monthly giving program. The need for taps and toilets is year-round, and I'm thrilled that my personal investment in WaterAid's mission can be too. Water is a precious commodity, a fundamental building block in development, as its effects spill over to other vital areas such as health, education, and women's empowerment WaterAid continues to do great work in some of the world's most disadvantaged communities. I am proud to be able to help in the small way that I can.


3 Linda285

Donor

Rating: 5

Clean water. Most of the United States population think all you have to do is turn on the faucet. Not so in a very large part of the world. WaterAid is working to change that. Feeling that I am helping in some small way is wonderful. I appreciate what WaterAid is doing and hope that more people will get involved to change lives around the world.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 4

I recognize the beautiful fact that they advocate fresh water resources for those in need of it. We all have a part in doing good in our world and they're doing their part the best that they can...I recognize this and hope that they find more support for their cause. I was exposed to this nonprofit on twitter (@Linux_kitty) and will continue to support the good advocacy they are apart of (even bringing awareness).

2

Donor

Rating: 5

WaterAid is one of the most amazing organization I have ever come across. They fulfill such a vital but often overlooked basic staple of life. Water, that most of us simply take for granted. To see the wonderful work they are doing in such remote areas the world over just blows me away. WaterAid is that one special fund raising organization that I have a hard time saying no to, and one that I would request everyone to consider donating to whenever possible as it is a sad reality that what we waste on a daily basis is not attainable by so many the world over. Their staff is absolutely wonderful. God bless them.

Akbar Mahmood
Muskego, WI

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

WaterAid originally reached out to our club and asked for if we would be interested in a collaboration. As a graduate club leader it was extremely refreshing to see a non-profit going out of their way to expand their community and meet new people in the area of development. We had a great experience with WaterAid, they were very communicative and supportive as we worked to create a fundraiser for them. The work the group does as a whole is extremely needed and they manage to do it well. Keep up the great work!

3 Parul A.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

After reading that a root cause of malnutrition may be abundance of human waste polluting soil and water (rather than a scarcity of food), I began looking for organizations that address this issue. that is when I found out about WaterAid. I was very happy to find out that they are assessing the need for water sanitation and hygiene. The international development club at my masters program does fundraising for them, and I am so happy that we are contributing to such a great cause.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

WaterAid America is a remarkable and credible institution that I have had the pleasure of knowing for more than a year now. The organization stands out in their approach to development in that they are more people focused. They involve the communities at all stages of their projects, and I believe this is a more sustainable way of carrying out development work.

The organization also creates advocacy opportunities for young people to explore and learn - a great way of equipping them with skills and real life experience. WaterAid America has the most jovial and engaging staff, I do admire their commitment to providing clean water and proper sanitation to the most deserving people around the world.

I love WaterAid America.

1 anotherjennifer

Donor

Rating: 5

The more I learn about Wateraid, the more I love this organization. I started to blog about Wateraid's work on a volunteer basis and continue to do so. I became a donor because I could see exactly how my money would be spent and the immediate impact it would make. Wateraid's work to bring access to clean water and sanitation helps women and girls around the world become empowered so that they can go to school and earn money for their families. This is something I can stand behind!

1

Donor

Rating: 5

On a trip to Cambodia, our guide revealed that he had been kidnapped by the Khmer Rouge at age 5, tortured for "looking ethnic Chinese" and then transformed into Pol Pot child soldier. As a part of his "atonement," he helped an American visitor fund a village water pump--the only one in the village. I came home wanting to help our nation "atone" for the bombing of Cambodia by helping an organization install more pumps for clean water.

1 John211

Donor

Rating: 5

I wanted to fundraise for clean water and sanitation to the underserved of India during a two month vacation in the country. WaterAid rose to the top of organizations that have a stellar reputation and hands on the ground that are creating real change. They are in country with local teams, working on policy as much as infrastrucutre. I was introduced to the local team in Delhi, saw their work, and hit my fundraising goal with their support.

1 Rosemarie R.

Donor

Rating: 5

I was fortunate enough to be asked to joint the board of WaterAid over four years ago. As a Brit, I had long been an admirer of their work. As a board member of I have been lucky enough to have seen first hand the amazing work they do and real difference they make in peoples lives, especially women and girls who are often the people who suffer most from the lack of these most basics necessities
Critically they work closely with folks on the ground, in their communities, so that they don't just get access, for a week or a month or a year. They make sure that the projects are sustainable, that they can be maintained and built on over the long term. Access to water and sanitation is the basis from which many more opportunities can grow. Once a community has access to water so many other wonderful things can begin to happen. They move from surviving to thriving.

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

It is estimated that 40% of the world's population lives without adequate sanitation facilities, and the U.N. has projected that as much as half of the world's population could be living with severe water stress conditions by the middle part of this century. WaterAid is not only helping to address this problem by providing actual clean water and sanitation projects on the ground in numerous countries around the world, but - through its policy and advocacy activities - is also helping to educate the public and influence future private and public policy with respect to water resource issues.....i.e., providing concrete assistance and projects on the ground, but also raising public awareness and helping to shape future solutions and policy..... With more organizations like WaterAid approaching water resource challenges from both a local and global perspective, the planet can make progress towards solving these problems.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

As a donor to this organization, I value its dual mission of bringing clean water to communities and also providing safe sanitation facilities. I appreciate that, without safe accessible drinking water, life is very precarious. But I had no idea, before following this charity, that women and girls in particular face so much physical danger to use even the most primitive toilet facilities. WaterAid America gives poor and remote communities the basics for daily life that we take for granted. Their work is critical to the ability of those communities to develop into secure, healthy and sustainable social units.

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

Water is the beginning and sustenance of life. WaterAid is deeply involved in helping people provide safe drinking water for themselves and their communities, and appropriate sanitation to support their needs. WaterAid is a thoughtful, well-managed charitable enterprise, ans I support it enthusiastically.

1 Nicole79

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been fortunate to see WaterAid's work firsthand on the ground in Delhi, India inside one of many slums. I have been working with WaterAid as a volunteer blogger ever since. They are an amazing organization inside and out. I am passionate about the cause and I can't wait to do more to help spread awareness of their phenomenal work.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

A wonderful organization that works to give people one of the most basic needs in life. Learning what others have to go through to obtain clean water and sanitation makes me appreciate what I have. I like that they are careful with donations

1

Donor

Rating: 5

Water is life.
I have always been active with initiatives related to providing clean water access to underprivileged communities, but Water Aid truly did exceed my expectations with the integrity of their work. They know that their generous contributions are no good on their own - they must only be accompanied by simple and practical local solutions. Unlike other water related organizations, Water Aid BUILDS, SUSTAINS, and PROVIDES for communities from hygiene classes and faucets to water wells and composting latrines.
I am very impressed with the quality of their work and am honored to have gotten to know them.
I will continue to do "mini fundraisers" among my social /family/and professional networks in support of such an important cause - access to clean water!
Water is LIFE!

1

Donor

Rating: 5

I have been a supporter of Wateraid for a number of years after being introduced by a friend. Before that I had to admit that I was not aware of how many people in the world still do not have access to clean water and sanitization. That was what drew me to Wateraid- that they provide something so fundamental that many people (myself included) take forgranted.

I have recently learned about they way in which they work - they get local communities on board so that they also feel part of the project. This makes the work they do so much more sustainable and the benefits last longer term.

Wateraid interact with me on a regular basis- I receive emails about the projects they are working on and the many success stories. I also receive personal emails and calls from the team. It makes me feel part of a great cause.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

After working on a technical project related to water treatment a few years ago, I was interested in supporting clean water and sanitation as a basic human right around the world. A friend emailed me a New York Times article about WaterAid that described how, after installing pumps in a poor, drought-prone area in India, they also trained women in the region to maintain the pumps. Pumps were breaking and technicians were needed to maintain them, so why not train the very population that the water pumps were meant to help? This exemplifies WaterAid’s deep understanding of WASH sector issues and their comprehensive, yet efficient approach to solutions.

I also value WaterAid’s efforts to engage children in service-learning. WaterAid offers educational materials as well as opportunities for schools in America to get to know and support clean water and sanitation initiatives in partner schools in places like Nicaragua.

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

I've been an admirer of WaterAid for close to two decades, ever since they came to my attention after winning the Stockholm Water Prize -- the Nobel prize for water -- in the 1990s. In recent years, I joined the Board of WaterAidAmerica, and was able to become more directly associated with their activities. Simply put, their work to ensure access to water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) by the poorest communities is the best in the world -- no other NGO in their field has their track record of experience and success. And they complement their work to deliver results on the ground by tirelessly advocating for WASH in policy forums around the world.

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

As a board member and donor to WaterAid over the last decade I am a huge fan of the organization and its vital work in the poorest communities of the world. Access to water and sanitation is such a fundamental human right, yet in the developed world most of us take this right for granted, waste water on a regular basis and have no idea what it might be like to not enjoy the easy access that we all have. In working with WaterAid I have seen not only huge progress over the years in terms of their funding and faciliatating access to clean water and sanitation for millions of people - but important advancements in empowerment of women through their liberation from dangerous and arduous trips to unclean water sources to collect water, as well as education in important hygiene issues for whole communities.

Another significant positive for me is that WaterAid continually learns from their field experiences and their engagement with local partner organizations working with communities on how best to ensure project sustainability. In doing this they ensure that access to water and sanitation once provided is sustained, communties are trained how to maintain and upkeep equipment where appropriate and know who to turn to locally when any malfunctions or repair issues arise. This is an essential factor in our discussions with donors who naturally want to be reassured that WaterAid projects "stick" and donations are well spent.

Overall, I donate regularly to WaterAid as I believe those of us lucky enough to be born into the developed world owe it to the rest of the world to give back where we can.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

1- Water: a basic human right that eludes far too many

Of all human rights, the most basic is access to safe water and proper sanitation.
While most people in the West enjoy an abundance of potable water made readily accessible through indoor plumbing and have one or multiple bathrooms in their house, a brutal fact of life today is that almost one billion people rely on unsafe drinking-water sources and 2.5 billion people use inadequate sanitation facilities.

Bringing this very basic element of life to the world’s most deprived communities is a moral necessity to me; WaterAid is my favorite vehicle to make it happen.

2- WaterAid has an impressive reach.

It operates in 27 countries, assists 7,000 communities, provides safe water to 1.7 million people, much-needed sanitation to 2.2 million people, and promotes proper hygiene education to 2.0 million people. Not only is its reach global and diversified, but it focuses on the most marginalized communities around the globe.

3- Identification and cultivation of strong partnerships.

Wateraid excels at working synergistically with corporations whose social responsibility priorities align with its own mission. In intimate partnerships with WaterAid, these companies activate their assets, talents, know-how, resources, technology and people to meet simultaneously their charitable goals and WaterAid’s mission. Each partner brings his unique assets to the team to solve water, sanitation, and hygiene issues in the most efficient way.

Donor

Rating: 5

WaterAid provides me as a donor a direct conduit to resolving real world water issues. This is important to me because my donation to WaterAid allows those affected by water supply and quality issues to become responsible owners of the solutions to those very issues. I believe that solving people's water access problems is one of the most socially and economically enabling actions that a donor can undertake. The multiplier effect of liberating members of households from the task of obtaining reliable water and sanitation, particularly women, has far reaching benefits that can impact other meaningful social, economic, and political outcomes. I like giving to water because it saves lives, promotes hygiene, frees women and encourages responsible ownership of collective assets.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

I have been a donor with Wateraid for more than 5 years now. There are 3 things that I looked into before settling on Wateraid as my leading charity of choice:

1. Purpose Served - Good health is the key to building a vibrant and happy society. And we all understand that prevention is better than cure when possible. Wateraid, being the leading charity for clean, safe water and sanitation in Africa and Asia, addresses this issue head on with a proactive approach to prevent diseases from un-healthy water cutting short a life that other-wise could have gone on to a make a difference in our society.

2. Efficieny of Operation - Wateraid spends 80% or more of their annual budget on programs and service related to the cause they serve. That is an indication of how well Wateraid stays true to its mission and purpose.

3. Transparency of Financials- Wateraid scores high when it comes to transparency of their financial operations so you have one less thing to worry about when it comes to how well your money is spent.

Donor

Rating: 3

I appreciate being able to use paypal to make donations. wateraidamerica.org has a link named "WaterAid on eBay," which has a link to send a donation by paypal. Today, the URL for the eBay link is http://www.missionfish.org/charity/charity.jsp?NP_ID=17803. Then you have to click on the "Donate Now" tab. missionfish is eBay's charity effort; in fact, at the bottom of the missionfish webpage is an "About eBay" link. Charity Navigator shows that WaterAid is spending more money on program expenses than they're taking in, if I'm reading the graphs correctly, so they only rate 2 out of 4 stars. The logic is sometimes difficult to grasp, but it didn't seem like a reason not to give. I also hope the WaterAid executives can find a way to reduce their personal expenses so they won't have to pay themselves so much. I also hope Charity Navigator will update the "Your Review" field so that we can make separate paragraphs when we write our reviews. Thanks -neil-