'Let us develop our human settlements'


Our Organization



WAT-Human Settlements Trust (WAT-HST) is a non-governmental organization established and registered in Tanzania in October 1989 under the name “Women’s Advancement Trust” (WAT). In the year 2005, its Board decided to change the organisation’s name to read “WAT-Human Settlements Trust” (WAT-HST) so that it reflects on its actual activities. This new name was registered under the Trustees Incorporation Ordinance (Cap 375) on 19th September 2005. Gender remains a cross-cutting issue in WAT-HST’s work.

Primarily WAT-HST focuses on empowering low and middle income communities (and especially women) to participate fully and effectively in all aspects of human settlements development, the organization is committed to providing adequate and affordable housing with secure tenure for low and middle income households. WAT-HST does this by providing housing microfinance (HMF) and housing support services (HSS).


Our Philosophy
The Vision of WAT-HST is to be the leading partner in addressing housing and human settlements development in Tanzania.

It is the Mission of WAT-HST to promote and facilitate adequate and affordable housing and secure tenure for low and middle income groups, particularly women.

The Overall Goal of WAT-HST is to work with low and middle income groups, particularly women, to get housing microfinance and access adequate and affordable housing and secure tenure.

Our Core Values:                
Our client’s satisfaction is a constant measure of achievement for our team. While there is no doubt that this satisfaction is due to our commitment to our clients, it is also directly related to the values through which WAT-HST manages its operation. These include:
Mutual respect for others in the organization

A commitment to achieve goals


Our History
WAT-Human Settlements Trust was founded in 1989 by Mrs Tabitha Ijumba Siwale (Mama Siwale). She currently sits as Settler/Trustee on the Board of Directors. Mama Siwale has worked with communities for the most of her life and has greatly contributed to the improvement of people’s lives through various innovations.

One of her innovations is WAT, the organization aimed to promote the advancement of women through education and training. Through her efforts WAT expanded to WAT-HST so as to solve housing problem to low and middle income earners.

Mrs Siwale has distinguished herself through her commitment to making financial services more accessible to low and middle income earners especially women and to developing the local microfinance sector.

WAT Savings and Credit Co-operative Society (WAT SACCOS) was another innovation established to support its members through microfinance loans.

Mrs Siwale was the first female Tanzanian Minister, appointed Minister of the Ministry of Lands and Human Settlements Development by President Mwalimu Julius Kambarage Nyerere in 1975.



WAT- Human Settlements Trust Board of trustees provides oversight of the organization affairs and is composed of the following members:
1.         Prof. Bertha Koda  Board Chairperson
2.         Mrs. Tabitha Siwale  Settler/Board member
3.         Mr. Ezekiel Masanja 
4.         Ms. Tumaini Silaa
5.         Dr. Shaaban Sheuya
6.         Mr. Marco Vingilah
7.         Dr. Agnes Mwasumbi
8.         Judith Sando, CEO/ex official.


Senior Staff




International Funding Partners
Community-Led Infrastructure Finance Facility (CLIFF)
Rooftops Canada
Shelter Norway
Ontario Non-Profit Housing Association (ONPHA)
Co-porative Housing Federation of British Columbia (CHFB)


Partners from Tanzania
Ardhi University (ARU)
National Housing Research Building Agency (NHBRA)
Habitat for Humanity
Centre for Community Initiatives (CCI)
Housing Microfinance Working Group (HMFWG)
Government Ministries and Agencies
Ministry of Lands, Housing and Human Settlements Development
Ministry of Community Development, Gender and Children


Regional Partners
Zimbabwe National Association of Housing Cooperatives
National Cooperative Housing Union (Kenya)
The Kuyasa Fund (South Africa)
Uganda Cooperative Alliance
Enterprise Development Holdings (Malawi)
The African Center for Housing Finance (South Africa)


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