Before we installed a high-capacity rain tank at Kako Special School for the Mentally Handicapped, students would line up to fetch water in the mornings only to find that the school's small rain tank was empty.
“Initially, we experienced a lot of challenges pertaining [to] water," said 18-year-old Mutisya. "Drinking water was not always available. Also, food couldn’t be cooked well, [and] our hygiene was very poor, from our utensils to the classes. We could get water from the dam, which was not very safe."
Because the school still needed water, the burden of procuring it fell on the school administration, who ended up spending a large portion of the school's budget buying water from vendors.
But since the rain tank was installed, all that has changed, and students' hygiene has really improved.
“Now, life has become easy and bearable," Mutisya explained. "We have had a lot of water, which has helped us improve our levels of sanitation in our dormitories. We use the water from the tank to drink, cook, wash our hands after visiting the latrine, and even clean our dormitories."
Not only are the students thriving, but the school has been able to implement developments, which is important given that students stay there all the time.
Headteacher Eunice Kimeu said: "In the past years, we have been having plans to make our environment good but failed over and over again because of [the] insufficient water supply. Now we have been able to plant many trees which we received from the county government, and we are taking care of them now that we have enough water. Our dormitories are ever sparkling clean. The school looks lively and has [an] ambient environment for students to stay [in]."
“As a school, we have been able to plant trees, which are currently doing well," Mutisya added. "The water from the water tank has made us achieve our goal of keeping ourselves clean. This is through [the] washing of hands and our beddings, as well as [our] utensils (dishes). Our environment is taking a good shape now."