Heifer Uganda and Heifer Netherlands developed a strong technical proposal based on Market Systems Development, and we have won! Aqua for All (A4A) will support us in setting up a reverse water supply chain at the level of two cooperatives (Kiboga Livestock Farmers and Dwaniro Dairy in Uganda). The project idea has a strong business case: the current lack of access to water will be turned into a business opportunity for both dairy farmers and cooperatives. 

Currently, milk produced by dairy farmers is collected in milk cans by transporters on mopeds, who deliver them to the dairy cooperatives, and return them empty to the farmers. What if these milk cans could be returned filled with safe water instead?

This is the solution: Water for Dairy Businesses (W4DB) combines the logistics of water delivery with that of milk collection.

Water for Dairy Businesses will 1) set-up a viable water supply chain, 2) improve the milk quality at farmer and cooperative level, and 3) create buy-in from financial institutions. Each cooperative will set up and run a new water supply service comprising at least two water sources (boreholes), each installed with a submersible solar powered pump, an overhead water tank, a mini piped network, and a treatment system. This is a trusted and proven technology in rural Uganda. Each water source will have two water kiosks selling safe water. In total, W4DB will create at least four water sources and eight water kiosks. A strongpoint of the design is that W4DB explored different scenarios around available water capacity and can adjust if needed.

A4A is a reputable organization in the field of water management and sanitation and they commented us for the highly innovative character of the design. Within 2 years 15,000 dairy farmers and neighboring communities will have access to safe and affordable water. An important component of the scaling strategy is the buy-in from financial institutions. Once proof-of-concept has been developed, this model can be replicated to accelerate impact, aiming to reach at least 3 million people in 10 years.

The total funding for W4DB is €249,536. €200,000 comes from A4A, €13,536 from Heifer, €30,000 from the cooperatives, and €6,000 from the local government. We will leverage this institutional win and identify other donors who might be interested in funding a similar project, yet in another region in Uganda. If you have any relevant actors in mind, please reach out to Karin Wilms.

This was a highly competitive CfP: only 10% makes it to the finish line. It was a co-creation process, where the donor added their water management expertise and challenged us and through multiple feedback rounds. All in all it took us two years to reach the finish line and it was a true team effort! 


The pathway to living income

We work with local farming families, their communities, and relevant partners to build sustainable farming businesses and food value chains that strengthen rural economies and put people on the pathway to living income.