Angazia’s mission is to improve the lives of people living in poverty by making better water and energy technologies affordable.
Thanks to innovations in technology there are a range of simple domestic products on the market that can help improve the lives of the poor. But for the 3 billion people living at the bottom of the economic pyramid (BoP), these products can be out of reach. Unpredictable and volatile incomes, lack of basic infrastructure and the high cost of basic commodities like energy, water and health care, can make investing in a new product, such as a solar system or water filter, an unacceptable risk.
Angazia reduces this risk by allowing our customers to purchase our products on credit. Savings groups negotiate their initial ‘buy-in’ and weekly repayment amount based on what they can afford. Moreover, our products usually replace an existing cost (for example kerosene) which means that there is no increase to household costs.
"The money I was using on buying kerosene, nowadays I buy food with it" - Lucy Wambui, Gioto, Kenya
As a for-profit social enterprise we seek to give people access to better choices. We are committed to a 'double bottom line', combining social good with financial stability to achieve lasting impact and eliminating the need for donor funding.
People in developing countries often pay more for basic necessities because they can only purchase in limited quantities. Kerosene, used for lighting, can cost families up to 25% of their income and water from kiosks or mobile vendors can cost up to 11%. Research suggests this exceeds a “catastrophic spending threshold” of 10%, meaning reduced spending on other basic needs, disposing of assets, incurring debt or becoming more impoverished.
The clean water and energy products provided by Angazia reduce this financial burden. With these savings people can redirect their money towards other household costs such as food, medical care and school fees.
Kerosene and unsafe water pose significant health risks for people in the developing world.
Kerosene use can cause skin and eye irritation, respiratory infections, lung and throat cancers as well as accidental fire and poisonings. The World Bank estimates that the 780 million women and children breathing kerosene fumes around the world are inhaling the equivalent of 2 packs of cigarettes a day.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that water-borne diseases such as dysentery, typhoid and cholera kill up to 3.4 million a year. These diseases are easily preventable with access to clean water.
Improved health outcomes mean fewer school days missed due to illness. Cheaper, cleaner lighting means those children can study longer after dark. A reduction in costs for lighting or water means more money available for school fees, a significant expense for many of our customers.
“My daughter who is in form four is able to study until late in the night and early morning.”
- Ann Ndibaa
A kerosene lamp emits up to 1 tonne of carbon over its lifetime (5 years). Much of this is ‘black carbon’, which is a byproduct of incomplete combustion. One kilogram of black carbon produces as much warming in a month as 700 kilograms of carbon dioxide does over 100 years.
Measuring Our Performance
Angazia evaluates our performance by looking at our impact on the communities we work with. Interviews are conducted before, during and after a customer’s engagement with us. We track a number of indicators related to our goals.
We use the following indicators to ensure that the impact we’re aiming for is achieved.
Products sold (#)
Repeat sales (%)
Number of kerosene lamps removed (#)
Savings reported ($)
Number of savings groups formed (#)
Number of individuals impacted (#)
Inclusion of women participants (%)
We also collect qualitative data from customers about other reported benefits such as additional hours available; education results; and health. To ensure that we are reaching our target market we are incorporating the Grameen Foundation’s ‘Progress out of Poverty Index’ - a country-specific, ten-question survey used to assess if a household is living below the poverty line. The index will also allow us to track changes in the lives of our customers over time.