Water.org has been supporting the microfinance market for water and sanitation since 2004 by encouraging financial institutions across 13 countries to offer specialized water, sanitation and hygiene microloans. Training and technical assistance is provided alongside a small grant that goes towards project preparation and monitoring for institutions willing to try out dedicated water, sanitation and hygiene lending, but no capital for lending is provided. These incentives are needed to address the reluctance that institutions often feel about lending for a social good rather than something they perceive to be income-generating. Similarly, utilities often need to be incentivized to expand their networks into low-income communities and create payment plans to accommodate poorer households.
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