Centre for Affordable Water and Sanitation Technology

B12, 6020 - 2nd Street SE
Calgary, AB T2H 2L8
CEO: Shauna Curry
Board Chair: David P. O'Brien

Charitable Reg. #:86375 1616 RR0001


Ci's Star Rating is calculated based on the following independent metrics:

[Charity Rating: 2/5]



Audited financial statements for current and previous years available on the charity’s website.



Grade based on the charity's public reporting of the work it does and the results it achieves.



The demonstrated impact per dollar Ci calculates from available program information.


Charity's cash and investments (funding reserves) relative to how much it spends on programs in most recent year.



For a dollar donated, after overhead costs of fundraising and admin/management (excluding surplus) 26 cents are available for programs.

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About Centre for Affordable Water and Sanitation Technology:

Centre for Affordable Water and Sanitation Technology is a 2-star charity with a strong results reporting score. It has overhead costs outside Ci's reasonable range and its reserve funds could cover six years and two months of annual program costs.

Founded in 2001, Centre for Affordable Water and Sanitation Technology (CAWST) is a licensed engineering firm that teaches people how to get safe drinking water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) at home using simple and affordable technologies.

CAWST does not directly deliver water and sanitation facilities to its clients. Its programs include training, consultations, and education. The charity does not provide a breakdown of spending by program. CAWST provides its programs to clients in three ways: directly through CAWST staff, through Water Expertise and Training (WET) Centre partners, and online.

CAWST provides two to five day training workshops on water, sanitation, and hygiene topics. In F2022, CAWST delivered 117 training sessions, and its partners delivered 313 sessions. In total, these training sessions were attended by 14,746 people.

Through its consulting services, CAWST trains individuals and WASH practitioners on how to create demand for WASH programs, build capacity, supply the right products, and monitor systems to improve sustainability. In F2022, the charity delivered 2,233 consultations, and its partners delivered 1,870 consultations to 14,256 people.

The charity also provides open-access, online resources on its website. In F2022, CAWST updated and developed 147 education materials. Additionally, 100,349 resources were accessed by 50,910 people.

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Results and Impact

In F2022, CAWST stated that over 12.5 million people have better water, sanitation, or hygiene as a result of its programs. The charity also stated that 81% of respondents to its survey reported that CAWST or its partners’ support helped them start, strengthen or grow their projects.

While Ci highlights these key results, they may not be a complete representation of Centre for Affordable Water and Sanitation Technology's results.

Charity Intelligence has given CAWST an Average impact rating based on demonstrated impact per dollar spent.

Impact Rating: Average

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Centre for Affordable Water and Sanitation Technology received $7.4m in donations in F2022. It also received $427k in government funding, representing 6% of total revenues.

Administrative costs are 18% of revenue (less investment income) and fundraising costs are 56% of donations. This results in total overhead spending of 74%. For every dollar donated, 26 cents go to the cause. This is outside Ci’s reasonable range for overhead spending. Ci did not include donations from related parties (CAWST’s Board Chair and other directors) or the corresponding deferred donations when calculating the fundraising cost ratio. These donations amounted to $5.5m in F2022, $2.6m in F2021, and $2.8m in F2020. The charity included costs related to procuring government funding in its fundraising costs, and therefore fundraising costs might be overstated.

CAWST has reserve funds of $28.6m which can cover six years and two months of annual program costs.

This report is an update that has been sent to CAWST for review. Changes and edits may be forthcoming.

Updated on July 26, 2023 by Kiara Andrade.

Financial Review

Financial Ratios

Fiscal year ending December
Administrative costs as % of revenues 17.9%15.2%15.9%
Fundraising costs as % of donations 55.8%11.9%3.0%
Total overhead spending 73.7%27.0%18.9%
Program cost coverage (%) 619.3%513.1%602.0%

Summary Financial Statements

All figures in $000s
Donations 7,4065,1448,005
Government funding 4275391,382
Fees for service 70259103
Investment income (1,194)1,590497
Total revenues 6,7097,5319,986
Program costs 4,6145,5714,704
Administrative costs 1,4149011,509
Fundraising costs 1,091297158
Total spending 7,1186,7676,372
Cash flow from operations (409)7643,614
Capital spending 1651824
Funding reserves 28,57128,58228,325

Note: To report on a cash basis, Ci adjusted for deferred contributions in donations, affecting revenues by $1.7m in F2022, ($1.3m) in F2021, and $3.4m in F2020. Ci adjusted for deferred contributions from government funding, affecting revenues by $65k in F2022, nil in F2021, and ($135k) in F2020. Ci included investment income in revenues, affecting revenues by ($1.2m) in F2022, $1.6m in F2021, and $497k in F2020. Ci reported administration and fundraising costs from the charity’s T3010 CRA filings and reconciled for the difference in program costs.

Salary Information

Full-time staff: 69

Avg. compensation: $44,817

Top 10 staff salary range:

$350k +
$300k - $350k
$250k - $300k
$200k - $250k
$160k - $200k
$120k - $160k
$80k - $120k
$40k - $80k
< $40k

Information from most recent CRA Charities Directorate filings for F2022

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Comments & Contact

Comments added by the Charity:

These comments were provided for a previous version of this profile.

Undesignated funding continues to be our largest and most important source of revenue, enabling us to be responsive and serve clients who have the most pressing needs. It allows us to be strategic and entrepreneurial as we look for ways to accelerate our reach and impact, and support organizations who access our services each year.

Our financial reserves provide the necessary stability to support long-term capacity development, enabling water, sanitation, and hygiene practitioners and organizations to access our services so they can build local skills and knowledge. Our reserves are calculated as the month-end cash balance divided by the average forecasted monthly expenditures, six months forward. As at December 2018, with no further funding and maintaining our current size, we could operate for three and a half years. Our goal is to build our financial sustainability and longer-term commitments with WET Centres to at least five years.

Moving forward, we will be ramping up our fundraising efforts, executing on a multi-year strategy to match up to $12 million dollars, generously donated by David P. O’Brien and Geoff Cumming. Through this match, our goal is to raise a total of $24 million dollars. This will allow us to accelerate our progress and tackle the worldwide shortage of local water, sanitation, and hygiene professionals.

Charity Contact

Website: www.cawst.org
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Tel: 403-243-3285


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Charitable Registration Number: 80340 7956 RR0001