In 2019, Evidence Action set a five-year organizational strategy with an ambitious goal to double our impact by 2024. We have been hard at work since and – despite the setbacks presented by a global pandemic – we are well on track to achieve this. We currently reach 195 million people across seven countries (yes, that’s less than in previous years – here’s why reductions in deworming treatment figures represent progress towards our goal!). We’re also planning to enter two new countries by the end of 2022, and expand further in 2023.
This growth is driven in part by the expansion of long-running programs – in particular Dispensers for Safe Water, as a result of new evidence showing the impact of water treatment on reducing child mortality. We’re doubling the program’s footprint to reach a total of 9 million people across Uganda, Malawi, and Kenya in 2023.
It is also driven by investments in our Accelerator, our engine for new program development, coming to fruition. Our Accelerator approach – a six-stage process for selecting and developing exceptionally cost-effective, evidence-based interventions – has proved more successful, more quickly than we anticipated. We have multiple new programs beginning their path to scale, including maternal syphilis screening and treatment to avert neonatal death and disability; iron and folic acid supplementation to combat childhood anemia; and in-line chlorination to reach more people with safe water.
For years, our biggest constraint to achieving global impact was having too few programs that met our rigorous criteria for evidence, cost-effectiveness, and scalability. Now, thanks to our Accelerator, these programs are poised to grow – and our most significant constraint is the resources required to take them to the individuals and communities that need them.
This year we are fortunate to have received grants from GiveWell for several programs, as well as a generous $20M donation from Mackenzie Scott that we can deploy flexibly to achieve our mission. We are grateful for this support and its significance as an endorsement of our organizational approach.
Even with these substantial investments, our resource base needs to grow rapidly to keep pace with our mission and strategy. Our goal of doubling our impact is well within our sights, and we continue to invest in the teams, programs, and systems that will enable its achievement. We aim to measurably reduce the burden of poverty for hundreds of millions of people in the poorest places – and we have evidence-based, tested solutions ready to scale cost-effectively. We continue to seek partners and supporters to join us in acting urgently on this mission – and are immensely grateful for those already on this journey. Poverty doesn’t wait, and neither should we.