A male Water Compass staff member working with community members to plan the location of a proposed water point

We’re driven by community input and strategies that work

Three Water Compass staff members talking to a woman at her home about her community's needs

Every project we take on is informed by what will actually be effective for the people it's meant to benefit.

How do we know?
We ask them. And we listen.

Instead of parachuting in, constructing a water source, and then moving on, we work hand in hand with the people we serve to ensure our solutions continue to work for them.

A Water Compass solar-powered water point among trees, two boys loading full jerry cans onto a bicycle

If it's not sustainable, we're not interested.

Water for a year is great. But water for a lifetime? That's a game changer.

Our model is designed with this in mind. We don't just build water systems. We build and manage resources to ensure that communities never have to worry about water again.

A female Water Compass staff member talking to a woman at her home about her community's needsA group of men feeding a long pipe into the ground, which will tap into an underground water sourceA Water Compass technician checking the electronic payment system on a solar-powered water pointA woman standing outside amid trees, holding her young daughter and smiling

Our sustainability model, in action:


Community Engagement

We meet with potential communities to discuss every detail and answer every question about our water systems. Community members then vote for the project to proceed or not.


Build Infrastructure

We upgrade existing water sources or drill new ones. We install a solar-powered pump, build raised storage tanks, construct community water points, and install a solar powered digital payment system.


Operate and Maintain

Our water systems are largely automated and we are able to monitor them remotely. Local agents help with general upkeep and our technician is there to respond immediately to any fault. Our goal is to ensure that water is available 24/7/365.


Reinvest to Increase Access

The revenue we collect is first used to operate and maintain the water systems. As revenue grows over time, we reinvest any profits to expand existing systems or build new ones, thereby continually increasing access to clean water.

For every water system we operate, Water Compass has a local agent in the community, who is a key partner for us.

Their main responsibilities are to:

  • Sell water credit
  • Keep the water stations clean
  • Report any problems to Water Compass’ technician
Read about one of our agents
One of Water Compass's female local agents standing in the small store she runs on the site of a water point

Our model works best at scale.

Once enough projects are running, the entire enterprise is self-sustaining, and our impact compounds.

The more communities we serve, the more communities we can serve, and so on, and so on.

Water Compass staff member leading a community workshop on hygiene practices

Our work goes well beyond water.

Communities without clean water often have inadequate toilet facilities and poor hygiene practices.

Even when clean water becomes available, the lack of toilets and hygiene means that diseases will persist.

That’s why our programs also include the promotion of improved sanitation and hygiene.

Man washing his hands at an outdoor hand-washing station

We partner with local builders and entrepreneurs to help communities and households build toilets and improve sanitation on a wide scale.

A female Water Compass staff member talking to a woman at her home about her community's needs

Our teams also go door-to-door in partner communities to educate all ages on improved sanitation and hygiene practices. This isn't a one-time event; we follow-up and continually support households.

A female Water Compass staff member walking with two young woman, holding hands with their arms up in celebration.

We work in schools to ensure that future generations learn and practice good hygiene behaviors from an early age.

A young woman in a pink school uniform standing in front of the new bathrooms installed by Water Compass at her school

We also focus on menstrual hygiene management for the older students to reduce stigma and keep girls in school.

        Water Compass has truly brought something so special to Uganda.  Their solar-powered water stations are wonderful and the payment system they use makes operation and maintenance so much easier. Our people are so lucky to have them working in Gomba district.

Patrick Mwesige, Gomba District Water Officer
Water Compass staff member leading a community workshop on hygiene practicesFemale students washing their hands at a new hand-washing station at their schoolA man filling up a yellow jerry can with clean water

Local Agents: A critical piece of the process.

Our approach would not be as efficient or effective as it is without our dedicated agents.

By helping to maintain our water systems and acting as the primary points of contact in the communities we serve, they are indispensable members of our team. We couldn’t achieve what we do without them.

Meet Nalongo: Our Local Agent in Mbirizi

Nalongo – an honorific name meaning “mother of twins”- is Water Compass’ local agent for our solar powered water supply system in the village of Mbirizi in central Uganda.  

As an agent, Nalongo is responsible for selling and loading credit onto users’ tokens, keeping the water station clean, and informing Water Compass of any issues which arise.  

But Nalongo is more than just an agent, she is a partner and has a stake in the water system working.

Every month, she receives a 10% commission of the water credit she sells...

Read the story

Learn about our impact