Uptime Expands Results-based Funding to Sustain Drinking Water for Over 4 Million Rural People Globally

The Uptime Catalyst Facility is pleased to announce its expansion to more than double in size in 2023 as it welcomes 7 new service providers to results-based contracts. This expansion will support rural water services in 12 countries across Africa, Asia and Latin America, serving over 4 million people. Partnerships include a continuing commitment to fragile areas including Mali, Burkina Faso and Nicaragua.

This press release features multimedia. View the full release here: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20230130005055/en/

Uptime 2023 Scale Up (Graphic: Business Wire)

Uptime 2023 Scale Up (Graphic: Business Wire)

Uptime has developed and executed innovative results-based contracts to sustain rural drinking water services at scale. The Uptime Catalyst Facility is a UK charity piloting conditional grant payments to reliable rural services where users pay a share of costs. Since 2020 it has disbursed over $1,000,000, supporting services for c. 1.5 million people at a cost less than 1 dollar per person annually. In total, water users contributed roughly a third of maintenance costs for 4,000 waterpoints that work over 96% of the time.

With this new global expansion, we project that water users will contribute approximately USD 2.5 million towards services in 2023. Results-based funding will help meet remaining gaps between operating costs and revenues to sustain water services. Despite climate shocks and economic uncertainty, targeted funding combined with user payments can ensure that water keeps flowing - especially in rural areas.

The initiative convenes a diverse group of rural operators and funders to explore transformation of funding for sustainable rural drinking water globally. Perhaps as valuable as the service outcomes is the data produced. Learning from these contracts can provide models to transform how governments guarantee drinking water sustainability at scale. Results-based payments linked to verified service metrics could help limited public resources to effectively deliver on the SDG of universal drinking water services by 2030.

Hilton Foundation: “A great challenge in achieving safe water services in rural areas is the lack of capacity to provide professional and reliable services according to well-defined metrics. We are excited to partner with the Uptime Catalyst Facility to provide reliable water service provision to rural communities in Ghana, Uganda and several other countries worldwide through the use of result-based contracts.” Nabil Chemaly, Senior Program Officer, Safe Water Initiative.

Safe Water Network: “Participation in results-based financing mechanisms can be a game-changer for small water enterprises, allowing them to access the resources they need to grow and improve the services they provide to their communities. The Uptime Catalyst Facility is unique in that it directly addresses barriers to scale and helps implementers demonstrate impact, ultimately providing a clear path to sustainability and growth while improving access to safe and reliable water for communities.” – Kurt Soderlund, CEO

Uptime Global: “We see an opportunity to transform the reliability of rural water services at scale, and expanding results-based contracts through the Uptime Catalyst Facility provides the chance to demonstrate what is possible in practice.”

– Duncan McNicholl, CEO