• Social Innovation Fellowship

Award Year 


WaterWalla is a social venture aimed at bringing clean water technologies to urban slums in a sustainable form. Focusing on creating a water product portfolio of leading technologies from corporations around the world and then empowering slum residents with this portfolio through the creation of sustainable micro-enterprises, WaterWalla seeks to create a long-term solution for the problem engendered by unsafe drinking water and subsequent preventable waterborne diseases. WaterWalla first sources these products and then gives local entrepreneurs access to these technolgoies, the marketing and educational tools, and the business skill set to be successful, profitable, and the ideal distribution channels in slums.

Personal Statement

One only needs to do a cursory research of the current water crisis to realize how grave the situation is in many underdeveloped areas around the world. Nearly a sixth of the world’s population lacks access to clean drinking water, and three million people die from preventable waterborne diseases every year. I believe that clean drinking water is a basic right, and I also believe that it is within our power, as undergraduate students, to bring change to these people’s lives. This is why I decided to become involved in WaterWalla.

As the Director of Research at WaterWalla, I hope to become a knowledge leader in the fields of slum health and slum markets. By reading extensively and speaking with other experts in the field, I hope to be able to learn all that I can about the clean water technologies that are currently available, including their efficacy, reproducibility, and past implementation strategies. The team also hopes to publish a literature review about the effectiveness of health education in creating demand for clean water technologies in the future. I will also be a major part in planning, monitoring, and analyzing the results of the pilot implementation study we will conduct in June. This pilot implementation study will be an exceptional opportunity to test our business model in practice and to learn directly from the people we want to help about what exactly they want from us to improve their access to clean water.