Frequently Asked Questions
We have put together a list of questions that are frequently asked in respect of the Solaqua Foundation. Should you be unable to find the answer to your question, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Safe drinking water is a basic human need. Water can be plentiful, but not necessarily safe to drink. It may be drawn from unsafe sources, or it may become contaminated due to poor sanitation and storage. Contaminated water can cause illnesses such as diarrhoea, which is particularly dangerous for small children and adults already in poor health.
The UN's Sustainable Development Goals and the Constitution of Nepal stipulate that every citizen shall have access to safe drinking water. However, the government will not be in a position to deliver on this promise for the foreseeable future. In our opinion, having third parties distribute products free of charge would be a merely short-term solution (such as during an emergency) – financial incentives play an important role in ensuring lasting improvements beyond the end of a project. Experience has shown, for example, that facilities tend to be kept in good repair when people, such as vendors of water (water kiosks) or products (merchants), can generate income from them. Families, as consumers, benefit too, however: fewer illnesses ultimately mean greater quality of life, through being able to work more (higher income) and attend school more often (better education).
Nepal is one of the poorest and least developed countries in the world. Although water sources can be found in almost all regions, they are not always of adequate quality. The size of the country makes efficient and effective projects possible, also in collaboration with government offices.
For Solaqua, it is important to concentrate on a few countries so that the resources available can be implemented efficiently. Besides long-term projects, the Solaqua Foundation also supports emergency aid and reconstruction work after the earthquake in Nepal.
Sustainability is an important criterion for Solaqua in the selection of projects to support. In the past, the foundation has been successful in helping change people's habits on a lasting basis over many years (ideally, over generations), thereby helping to improve the health of those involved. Solaqua wants to build on these achievements and, at the same time, reinforce the aspect of sustainability in the future. This is why it is also important to us that we establish a relationship with our partners over a number of years, providing them with personalised support.
For many people, the zewo seal is a guarantee that only a specific proportion of donations is spent on administration and marketing. Since, for Solaqua, these costs are covered by a Swiss company within the framework of its social commitment, the Solaqua Foundation far exceeds zewo requirements in this area, meaning it does not have to channel its energies into obtaining the seal.
The Solaqua Foundation is in the unique position of being able to pass on 100% of donations received to projects: the Foundation Council provides its services on a voluntary basis and the costs relating to executive management are covered through the generous support of a Swiss company.