A year ago, generous donors helped build a hand-dug well for the Kyangundi Self-Help Group in Kenya. Because of these gifts and our monthly donors, partners are able to visit project sites throughout the year, strengthening relationships with communities and evaluating the actual water project. These consistent visits allow us to learn vital lessons and hear amazing stories – we’re excited to share this one from our partner Mutheu Mutune with you.
Life for these members has changed in many ways. They are now practicing vegetable farming and tree planting. They sell water from the well and currently have 420 shillings saved in their bank account. The citrus trees they had planted in their nurseries are now ready to sell, and the money from the tree seedlings will be used for group development. Before this project, clean water for drinking was scarce; the members could only dig holes in the sandy riverbeds in hopes of finding any water at all.
Thus, this well has been of great benefit to both the self-help group members and the non-members who use the water. They also had attended a training on sanitation and hygiene which has impacted their lives positively, and water-related diseases have not been reported.
We met the group's vice secretary, Josephine Kyalo at the well. She and her family have used the water for making bricks. "This water has helped me construct my three bedroom house and now my home looks beautiful. I have also established a small garden with my favorite type of flowers. We never used to treat our drinking water, but since the project we have constantly been treating the water and storing it in a safe place. This has resulted in fewer cases of typhoid and amoeba. We sell water from the well and use the money for maintenance expenses. Our children have improved their school performance because they use time initially wasted going to fetch water on reading and doing their homework instead. The water has boosted tree planting since the survival rate has increased compared to before as you can see our tree nursery is doing well and we have transplanted them to our farms!" she explained excitedly.
15-year-old Mbatha Maingi was also at the well. She told us, "My personal hygiene has improved because water is available. This has happened to nearly all the students in the area, and they are now comfortable. Before, some would fail to attend classes as well as church. They are now comfortable and their performance has improved. We grow vegetables and fruits at our farms which have improved our nutrition. Before this project, we used to waste a lot of time walking for long distances, and at times we’d be forced to go home late due to long lines. Distance has decreased and time taken is less than 30 minutes."
The Water Project and our partners are committed to consistent monitoring of each water source. Our monitoring and evaluation program, made possible by monthly donors, allows us to visit communities up to four times a year. Read more about our program and how you can help.