Ellen Abbott

Ellen Abbott

MPA 2011, Cultural Bridge Fellow
Anza, Tanzania

Ellen worked as a summer associate with an organization called Anza (previously called SolarCycle) in Tanzania.  Anza engineered a product that improves access to clean water for such things as cooking, hygiene, irrigation and off-season farming.  Ellen was brought on as part of a small team to analyze the viability of potential business models, conduct customer and supply chain research, support in-country partnership discussions, and perform due diligence on sites for company operations.  Based on initial pilot success, and success of two previous product launches, the new product had potential to make a major difference in the lives of women.    Since women and children are often responsible for carrying water to and from the water source, and have to walk numerous miles with 20L buckets on their heads, Anza’s product would have lasting impact in their lives by (1) eliminating the back and spine stress from carrying water and (2) reducing the time it takes to collect water, thus freeing them up for household activities, education and potentially an alternative income-generating activity and (3) enabling women’s work to directly lead to agricultural income.