I recently had a chat with Susan Davis, of Improve International, who wanted to know how things are going at Living Water now that we’re two years into the execution of our strategic plan. Susan has 20 years of leadership experience with a wide variety of organizations, particularly in the Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) sector. She started Improve a year ago, collaborating with NGOs, donors, and others to increase coordination, provide transparency, and create accountability (particularly focused on the WASH Sustainability Charter). Reposted with permission from the Improve International Blog.
Susan: You launched your new strategic plan in February 2011 – what were the key reasons for that plan, and how did it come together?
Jonathan: Living Water International was born in the early 90’s, when water development—this was before anyone was talking about “WASH”—was all about installing hardware. We all thought that a little village-level maintenance training was enough to ensure sustainability, and that some basic instruction in hygiene was enough to improve community health. Over 20 years, we had learned that these are really just the first steps toward lasting impact. We were starting to go deeper in a lot of our programs, but in 2010, we decided to hit the “reset” switch on our whole organizational strategy.