Safe Water Lead



Safe Water Lead

About UpEnergy Group

UpEnergy brings aspirational products that save energy and improve health within reach of low-income customers. We develop distribution channels that distribute efficient and clean energy and safe water technologies. We finance our product subsidies and our growth via bespoke projects that generate carbon emissions reductions that we produce for global partners seeking emissions reductions and social impact co-benefits.

We sell products under our SmartHome brand, and through partnerships with other brands. We operate regional distribution hubs and build relationships directly with customers through the SmartHome sales operation. We’ve seen 100%+ year on year growth for years and have reached over 800,000 African households with products that deliver health and income benefits. A typical Smarthome stove saves each family we reach about 9% of their annual income while reducing air pollution.

UpEnergy has a 10-year track record of building projects that overperform expectations in the generation of emissions reductions, and that deliver on our performance promises to our customers. We are one of the largest developers by volume of projects focused on poverty alleviation through energy savings and fuel switching. Our team has a collective 50 years of climate finance experience and is at the forefront of Paris-era project finance.

About the Role

UpEnergy is at a time of exciting growth, and rapidly expanding into new geographies and new product categories. As part of this growth, we are working to diversify our VER-generating assets beyond improved cookstoves to a wider range of life-changing products. One of UpEnergy’s strategic growth areas is the roll-out of safe water projects both at the institutional (i.e. schools, hospitals, restaurants) and the household level. Beyond the powerful health and sanitation benefits of clean water, the delivery of safe water systems also has the potential to unlock tremendous environmental benefits by displacing the need to boil water and therefore reducing the consumption of biomass and related carbon emissions.

In this context, UpEnergy is seeking an experienced and passionate individual to lead the design and implementation of the company’s institutional and household level water programs across multiple African markets. The individual should have experience in developing safe water programs in resource-constrained environments and be motivated by the company’s goal to bring safe drinking water to millions of people in sub-Saharan Africa.

The UpEnergy Safe Water Lead is an exciting position that will provide the opportunity to work across multiple UpEnergy markets. If you are eager to gain incredibly rich, hands-on experience while being part of one of the fastest growing social enterprises in Africa and believe you’re up for the challenge (as well as a lot of fun!), we’d love to hear from you!

Key Responsibilities

Technology Sourcing & Evaluation

  • Source and evaluate optimal safe water systems that meet the infrastructure and demographic challenges of UpEnergy’s markets

  • Develop product assessment and evaluation framework that solves for local market constraints such as minimal behaviour change, high affordability, taste preferences, and other cultural considerations

  • Work with engineering and product teams to improve products and systems

  • Measure and track product performance against strategic KPIs

  • Collaborate with product team to help manage relationships and logistics with manufacturers

Roadmap Development, Pilot Design, and Commercial Roll-out

  • Design UpEnergy’s safe water product roadmap and develop evaluation framework in line with company strategy

  • Design safe water pilots and experiments to evaluate product-market fit and potential commercial success

  • Based on pilot learnings, work with all company functions (sales, marketing, carbon, operations/logistics) to design and implement UpEnergy’s safe water commercial launch strategy

  • Design, develop, and implement UpEnergy’s institutional safe water maintenance strategy

  • Engage external stakeholders such as Ministry of Education, Ministry of Health to scale UpEnergy’s institutional water programs

Maximizing and Monitoring Impact

  • Work with UpEnergy’s carbon team to optimize safe water projects around continued product usage, driving impact and carbon credit generation

  • Design innovative usage-oriented customer engagement strategies to build and maintain close relationships with our household customers

  • Manage the improvement of UpEnergy’s software platform for safe water system requirements, integrate customer communication platforms to communicate effectively with customers and collect and verify required data

Program Management

  • Create and strengthen program delivery systems to ensure high-quality implementation and service delivery

  • Develop program operations strategy and lead activities between field operations, research/evaluation, carbon data requirements, and support functions

  • Provide supervision and guidance and support to the field teams, developing team members into future leaders of UpEnergy’s safe water programs

  • Generate, manage and share knowledge for continuous program improvement

  • Forge and strengthen partnerships with government and other organizations to expand the relevance, reach, and impact of UpEnergy’s safe water programs

Does this sound like you?

  • Bachelor’s degree in social sciences, economics, business, anthropology, international relations or related field required; relevant Master’s degree preferred but not required

  • Track record of working in water sector or related field

  • Proven ability to effectively design and manage program interventions or capacity building programs, particularly in the water sector

  • Proven ability to manage complex programs spanning multiple disciplines and working with diverse stakeholders (public + private)

  • Experience creating strategic plans in new markets and/or around new products is a plus

  • Experience working for a social enterprise or other mission-oriented organization, experience rolling out water projects in resource-constrained environments is a big plus

  • Experience in product development and Human-Centered Design (HCD) is a strong plus

  • Innovative mind‐set oriented toward constructive problem‐solving and collaboration with stakeholders from various sectors

  • Exceptional organizational skills, attention to detail, resourcefulness, and ability to multi‐task and adjust to changing priorities

  • Strong understanding of statistical concepts as it relates to experiment design and program/impact evaluation is a big plus

  • Excited to be part of UpEnergy’s growth story

  • Open to significant travel to UpEnergy’s markets in sub-Saharan Africa


UpEnergy offers highly competitive compensation and benefits combined with an attractive bonus structure.

To Apply

Please send a customized cover letter highlighting your relevant experience – and the specific areas of UpEnergy’s work that most interest you – to [email protected].

 Location & Start Date

The position will be based in an UpEnergy market, for example Uganda or Madagascar. Regarding timing, we are looking for the right candidate to start as soon as possible, but we are flexible. Particularly under the current COVID pandemic, we put safety first while continuing to bring impact to our community and the environment. We appreciate your flexibility too in confirming a start date.

Love UpEnergy, but looking for a different role?

If you don’t think this role is the right fit for you, but you identify with UpEnergy’s mission and values, why not check out our other openings or drop us a line? There are many ways to make clean energy products available to more communities, and if you are the right person to play a role in this mission, let’s stay in touch, and let’s build something together!





IHE Delft Institute for Water Education - MSc in Water and Sustainable Development