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Microfinance for water and sanitation: How one small loan makes a huge difference

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This blog originally appeared on the The Consultative Group to Assist the Poor (CGAP) Microfinance Blog. Housed at the World Bank, CGAP is a global partnership of 34 leading organizations that seek to advance financial inclusion. The blog highlights a recent study which concludes that water and sanitation microfinance can be good for Microfinance Institutions, good for the development community, and -most importantly- good for borrowers and their families.

Addressing the world’s water and sanitation needs is one of the great human development challenges of our time. Globally, some 663 million people do not have access to improved drinking water sources, and approximately 2.4 billion people lack access to improved sanitation. Lack of access to clean water and basic sanitation facilities create significant costs in terms of illness, lost time and productivity.
While many households in the developing world have the ability and desire to pay for water and sanitation services, the high up-front costs of connecting to piped water supply or building a latrine are a deterrent to many. While microfinance has helped hundreds of millions access financial services, many microfinance institutions prefer to focus on lending for business purposes, rather than offering consumer loans.  

To continue reading the blog, visit the CGAP blog: "Microfinance for water and sanitation: How one small loan makes a huge difference"


John Ikeda

Water and Sanitation Specialist

Heather Arney

Senior Manager of Information, Monitoring & Evaluation,

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