Via Water Programme
The VIA Water programme was established in 2014 with funding from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands.
This unique incubation programme looked for advancing innovative ideas and solutions to solve water and sanitation problems in seven African countries: Benin, Ghana, Kenya, Mali, Mozambique, Rwanda and South Sudan.
Phase I of the VIA Water programme supported early stage water and sanitation innovations (ideas, solutions or start-ups) that provided tailor-made solutions to the needs of their communities. These initiatives were selected to participate in the programme, based on their innovativeness and scaling potential.
Innovators and entrepreneurs were invited to submit teaser proposals. The Aqua for All team then assessed the teasers and asked shortlisted applicants to send full proposals. The proposals were reviewed by subject-matter experts from the Aqua for All network. Successful applicants received a contract for support, which included coaching, training, access to Aqua for All’s networks and partnerships, and funds.
In five years, the programme received 525 teasers and supported 62 innovative ideas, from which 33 became start-ups.
Until July 2019, VIA Water was implemented by Aqua for All as a stand-alone programme.
At the moment, VIA Water has been fully integrated into Aqua for All to maximise synergy and overall impact.
The lessons learned and the experience from VIA Water Phase I are valuable contributions to the development of a more sustainable, innovative and inclusive water and sanitation economy in Africa and Asia.