Our water project costs vary depending on project type, geography, and local economies. On average, projects start at £8,000 and can cost £20,000 or more. Once you've made your gift, we'll pair it with an appropriate project (or projects).
Funding an entire water project means you’ll be recognised as the official project sponsor. But it takes time. Here's what to expect over the course of the next 21+ months.
Our giving year is split into two halves: January 1st - June 30th and July 1st - December 31st. We prepare to send your donation to the field at the completion of the half in which you give.
Before construction begins, our partners do extensive research and prep work, get permits and supplies, and partner with local communities to ensure long-term sustainability.
You get Update 1!
Construction is underway! Our partners collect midterm reports and send us information on project progress.
Our partners finish the work and train local communities to use and maintain their water points.
You get Update 2!
Our partners collect photos and GPS coordinates of the completed projects and send information about the specific communities you've served.
We verify all of the final data from our partners and prepare your report. It's time to celebrate!
You get your Completion Report!
See an example of the completion report you'll receive when your project is finished.
When projects are complete, we prove every one with photos and GPS coordinates on Google Maps.
We fund a variety of different water solutions. We choose each project solution based on water availability, culture, and economic conditions. When you sponsor a project, we’ll pair your donation with a solution of an appropriate cost. These are some of our solutions:
Have questions about sponsoring a project? Please get in touch with our team.
100% of your money goes to water project costs on the ground. Private donors cover the salaries of our staff so your money can go directly to the following costs (breakdown can vary by country, partner, and technology):
If you sponsor a water project at a school, we may use a portion of your money to build latrines in addition to the water project. Latrines are crucial to reducing water-related diseases, especially at schools or health clinics where populations are more dense.
charity: water works in some of the poorest and most challenging countries in the world because that's where the need is greatest. Naturally, despite our best efforts to meet your and our expectations, forces beyond our control occasionally require a change of plans. The list of uncertainties we've encountered is long: governments collapse, policies change, roads get washed out, pipes break, wells come up dry and community needs change.
No matter what happens, we promise that 100% of your donation will directly fund water project costs. In addition to updating you about our progress, we'll inform you if the location of your sponsored project has to change. In the unlikely event that we need to totally reallocate your funds, we'll put them toward projects substantially similar to the one you chose to support in the first place. If we absolutely cannot find a suitable project in the country you had hoped to help, we'll work with you to find an alternative country.
When your project is built and we receive completion data from our partners (about 21 months), we assemble and send you a report with the following information:
As much as possible. We don’t consider our projects “complete” until the community receiving them is engaged and empowered to care for them.
Where possible, our partners enlist local community members to help dig wells, construct filters, build ditches for piping or help out with any other construction tasks. Our maintenance models for each project reflect the community. Often, this means our partners train a local Water Committee to collect fees to maintain their projects.
We believe in water as a catalyst for social change. Our partners try to make sure the underserved or minority members of a community are represented and served by our water projects.
Building water and sanitation projects is a time-consuming business. We allow 21 months because we don't consider a project "complete" until we know that all of its components are in place and working for the best of the community. That includes community participation and training, as well as collecting photos, GPS coordinates and other details from each project. We require detailed data about each project from our partner organisations and verify it at charity: water headquarters to make sure there are no mistakes. Only then do we assemble your completion report. See above for a timeline of what happens in 21 months.
Each quarter, we have specific water project opportunities available in a variety of countries. Get in touch to learn about the specific countries we’re working in this month, and how your gift can sponsor some of our most urgent needs.
If you make an undesignated gift online, we will send your donation to the country where it will make the greatest impact. Our water programs team chooses which countries to work in based on need, and forms long-term partnerships with on-the-ground organisations. If you'd like to talk about where we work before you give online, email us!
Twice a year, our partners submit grants with specific project costs, and our programs finance team examines these closely to ensure they are accurate and reasonable. Project costs can vary greatly depending on technology, country, and partner organisation, but they form clusters. Based on analysis of costs in previous and upcoming grants, we've determined that £8,000 is most representative of a typical water project in countries we're working in.
Not every project costs exactly £8,000. We will match your donation to a project that’s closest in cost, and 100% of your money will go towards water projects in the field. For example, if you donate £8,000 for a drilled well, but it ends up costing £7,500, the extra £500 will go towards another charity: water project. If the project cost ends up at £8,500, funds from other charity: water donors will cover the remainder, but you will still be recognised as the project sponsor.