2016 was a year to reevaluate the strategic growth and long-term impact of Water Collective.

Our focus was to evaluate the organization's impact on not just one generation, but its ability to create educational heirlooms that's carried down generation to generation. 

We're on a mission to distribute water maintenance education that empowers a community to achieve complete Water Independence, but our ultimate vision is to strike generational impact. We want Water Independence to not just be solely achieved by one generation, but for water maintenance practices to become a habitual norm that's carried down generation to generation. 




Our 2016 Impact Report has been formatted to be completely conveyed through video.

To view our discoveries, explorations, and accomplishments this year, please view the 2016 Impact & 2017 Path video. 

If you're not familiar with our work, or would like to view our full story from where we began to where we are now, please begin at the Origins & What We Do video and move forward to the 2016 Impact & 2017 Path video.



Distributing maintenance trainings to as many individuals as possible is great, but we understand that our teachings have a definitive end if we don't strategically plan for its staying power. Instead of focusing on quantity this year, we dug deep into quality. Our team crafted its programs and teachings guided by these questions:

How do we make water maintenance a habitual norm?
How can we get maintenance education into the hands of future generations?

We want our partnered communities to survive a walk-away test. Do our partnered communities perform their water maintenance duties when there's no one watching? Do our teachings stick when our field staff isn't present to provide reminders? 

To track our progress, we created these KPIs to assess our efforts in knowledge retention, engagement, and more. With these feedback loops in place, we will be able to measure if we're walking closer towards transformative social change, or have some changes to make.

We'll be using these KPIs at the start of 2017 as a reference point on deliverables to improve on. In the following years, we'll be able to compare our progress year to year.



When the Water Committees of our partnered communities are assessed on the maintenance tasks they've completed every month, they score an average of 94%. This means that a community's Water Committee is retaining and performing their daily & monthly water maintenance tasks, and that the community is receiving reliable clean and flowing water. 


Water Committees score an average of 3.5 out of 5 when tested on their ability to recall and perform water maintenance duties. These tests and performance ratings are conducted frequently throughout a 3-year span to truly test Committee members' knowledge retention of maintenance duties over the years. 



Our goal is to create long-term impact that promotes maintenance education that's passed down generation to generation. In order to achieve this, women and youth, the main caretakers and actors of the coming generations, must participate in meetings and Committees related to their community's water. To be conscious of this, we track the diversity of community meetings. Currently 37% of community meetings are composed of youth and women. With an understanding of this baseline, we can introduce youth and women-targeted events to stimulate their participation in water management activities in the future. 


We track project engagement and each community's water management-related activities when our field staff isn't present. We believe that true social change is achieved when communities are engaged enough to facilitate water management activities on their own. Currently, the Water Committees of our partnered communities meet 2.25 times every quarter (3 months) to discuss water management matters and to facilitate different activities. 



A core, and validated truth our team has observed over the years is the power of community unity. A key facilitator in achieving community unity is a connected and dedicated field staff who are natives of our operating countries.

That's why we're happy to have increased the operational capacity and leadership roles of our Cameroon staff this year. Our Cameroon staff is 4x the size of our US team, and is leading our strategic efforts to pilot new activities and approaches that strengthen the generational impact of Water Independence for all. 




Richard shares his experience, and lessons learned as the Water Committee Secretary of Timber Road. If you've ever wondered what it's like to be on the receiving end of our programs, Richard tells it all. 



Thank you to our Guardian level donors who made our work possible this year. 


Hillswood Foundation
Leumi Bank
Live For Live Music
Marc Fisher
Stacey Carrier
Justin Grant
John Kleinow

Dennis Madden
Douglas Meyer
Vikram Reddy
Thomas and Sharon Sabo
Kunj Shah
Stephanie and Eric Sobotka
Yang and Young Sunwoo
Harish Tulsi



Join us in creating generational impact. To become a Guardian level donor, please sign up for quarterly giving here. 



Support our 2017 fund by donating today. 70% of our projects are made possible because of donations from you, our core supporters. 


Looking for other ways to donate? Make an in-kind donation, shop our store, or volunteer.