Money is often cited as one of the primary constraints preventing consumers from adopting water, sanitation and hygiene (WSH) products such as latrines and water filters. In an effort to help households in rural Cambodia overcome this barrier, WaterSHED is working with local microfinance institutions (MFIs) to improve customers’ ability to access finance (e.g., savings or credit) for WSH products.
On March 24, five women in the village of Srey Chhey, Takeo province, formed a group and took a micro-loan from Amret, a Cambodian MFI, with the specific intent of purchasing their own respective latrines. Though affordable, these women had been unable to pay the entire cost of the latrine upfront. Amret’s group loan product, however, provided them the opportunity to collectively finance toilets for their homes with a payment plan tailored to their ability to pay.
This event marks the beginning of cooperative efforts between WaterSHED and Amret to extend financing options to underserved portions of the WSH market. With Amret’s support, WaterSHED seeks to make WSH products more financially accessible at all points of the value chain, from input purchasing to manufacturing to the point of sale to the consumer.