The foundation partners with organizations at the very beginning of their endeavors, providing them with the capital they need to pilot innovations and prove solutions. We are unafraid of trying new approaches and filling needs to drive change, even if it means facing risks that other funders avoid. We also provide thought leadership to the field and are advisors to and advocates for our grantee partners.
We work in Latin America, Sub-Saharan Africa, and the Middle East, and we focus on water, sanitation, and hygiene; cookstoves; and ecumenical and interfaith issues. We strive to create an equitable, peaceful world in which everyone can thrive.
Sangery provides clean and affordable sanitation in poor urban areas of Nairobi Kenya, protecting the health of its residents and the environment. Its systems-based approach includes designing and manufacturing hygienic, affordable, and accessible sanitation facilities; fostering a network of local residents to purchase and operate those facilities; and collecting waste and converting it into fertilizer, insect-based animal feed, and renewable energy, which it sells to Kenyan farmers. The foundation first partnered with Sanergy’s for-profit arm. After a few years, it approached us to help fill its need for capital to help test and grow the nonprofit aspects of its work. We provided it with unencumbered funding, allowing it the freedom to use the working capital as it saw fit. We also provided steady support, sticking with the organization as it stumbled, innovated, and evolved.
Sanergy now has a network of 1,966 toilets that are used more than 66,883 times daily, reaching 13 percent of the population in which it works. It has also piloted new programs and technologies to streamline its operations and expand its reach. Its goal is to partner with governments, such as Nairobi County, to reach the majority of those living in chronically marginalized low-income communities. The foundation is proud that its support has helped the organization establish, refine, and expand its model, enabling it to attract additional funders and to tell its story to international policy makers.