Project Status

Project Type:  Borehole Well and Hand Pump

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 461 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - May 2022

Functionality Status:  Functional

Last Checkup: 05/23/2024

Project Features

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Malinda Primary School, located in a quiet, hilly, and rural village, is surrounded by beautiful rock formations and trees. Despite the surrounding beauty, the 461 students and staff at the school face the difficult challenge of not having enough drinking water each day.

The community has a spring which is the current primary water source for the school. Students make the trek to collect water throughout the day, starting first thing in the morning, then again at break time, and at lunchtime to ensure the school has enough for the day.

Emmanuel K., an 11-year-old student, shared, "[I] am affected psychologically as a child because I always have a lot of questions in my mind on how I will balance my classwork and fetching water. The body sometimes becomes tired and weak, forcing me just to miss school because I need rest."

The spring is far away and often does not provide enough water due to low output. Pupils and community members who share it wait in long lines and sometimes quarrel because everyone wants to get water first. Inevitably, students are late and return to class tired. Sometimes, teachers also complain that students disappear to their homes along the way and do not return to school until the next day.

The spring has been protected in the past but is neglected and not maintained, leaving it open to contamination by people, animals, and runoff from the surrounding farmland and homesteads. As a result, even when enough water is collected, it is often dirty. Students and teachers suffer from typhoid and stomach aches, leading to missing school and expensive hospital visits.

There is a small rain tank at the school, but it does not provide nearly enough water (especially during the dry season) because of its small capacity and overuse.

Mrs. Beatrice Mulengeka, the Head Teacher, shared her concerns, "As a teacher, [I] am not comfortable seeing pupils not having access to enough clean water. Sometimes [I] am so sad, but I can't do anything because most of the pupils miss classes because they are fetching water or they are sick."

The school needs a well to have safe, clean, accessible water throughout the entire school day.

What We Can Do:

New Well

We conducted a hydrogeological survey at this school and the results indicated the water table beneath it is an ideal candidate for a borehole well. Due to a borehole well's unique ability to tap into a safe, year-round water column, it will be poised to serve all of the water needs for this school's large population, even through the dry months.

The school will help collect the needed construction materials such as sand, rocks, and water for mixing cement. They will also provide housing and meals for the work team, in addition to providing local laborers. We will complement their materials by providing an expert team of artisans and drilling professionals, tools, hardware, and the hand-pump. Once finished, water from the well will then be used by the school's students and staff for drinking, handwashing, cooking, cleaning, and much more.

Handwashing Stations

There is currently nowhere for students to wash their hands after using the latrines or before eating lunch, let alone the water to do so.

The student health club will oversee the two new handwashing stations we will provide, and make sure they are kept clean and in working condition. The club leaders will fill the handwashing stations with water daily and make sure they are always supplied with a cleaning agent such as soap or ash.

VIP Latrines

We will construct two triple-door latrine blocks using local materials that the school will help gather. Three doors will serve the girls and three doors will serve the boys. All of these new latrines will have cement floors that are designed to be easy to use and to clean. And with a borehole right on school property, there should be enough water to keep them clean.

Training on Health, Hygiene, COVID-19, and More

We will hold a one-day intensive training session with students, teachers, and parents. This training will cover a wide range of topics including COVID-19 symptoms, transmission routes, and prevention; personal and environmental hygiene; and the operation and maintenance of the borehole, latrines, and handwashing stations. There will be a special emphasis on handwashing.

Our team of facilitators will use a variety of methods to train, including participatory hygiene and sanitation transformation, and asset-based community development. We will initiate a student health club, which will prepare students to lead other pupils into healthy habits at school and at home. We will also lead lectures, group discussions, and provide illustrative handouts to teach health topics and ways to promote good hygiene practices within the school including handwashing and water treatment. We will then conduct a series of follow-up trainings before transitioning to our regularly scheduled support visits throughout the year.

We and the school strongly believe that all of these components will work together to improve standards at this school, which will help lead to better student academic performance and will help unlock the opportunity for these students to live better, healthier lives.

Project Updates

May, 2022: Malinda Primary School Borehole Well Complete!

We are excited to share that Malinda Primary School in Kenya now has access to a new safe, clean water source thanks to the completion of their new borehole well! Students and staff are already using the well’s flowing water, which will provide them with a reliable source of water for all of their daily needs.

We also installed new latrines and handwashing stations and trained students and staff on improved sanitation and hygiene practices. Together, these components will unlock the opportunity for these students to live better, healthier lives.

David, left, fills a jerrycan at the new well.

"I will quench my thirst easily because clean and safe water is in school," said student David A. "I will no longer be going to the spring to fetch water. This will help me to concentrate on my classwork and am sure my grades and those of my classmates will improve."

Teachers were just as excited as the students about the new well on campus.

Mrs. Beatrice at the borehole.

"[I] am sure I will be drinking enough water because it is easily accessible," said Mrs. Beatrice. "As the school headteacher, [I] am sure that the school timetable will be followed fully by both the teachers and pupils. This will help us have more time with pupils and engage more on their weaknesses."

How We Got the Water Flowing

Parents, staff, and students all played a part in this well’s success. After determining the best site for the well through a hydrogeological survey, we obtained approval and a license from the government to begin drilling.

To prepare, the school collected fine sand and water for cement-making. When everything was ready, and the students went home from class for the weekend (drilling is very loud!), our drill team and staff arrived at the school to begin work.

Drilling commenced with excitement in the air. The team drove down a temporary casing to keep the walls from collapsing as the rig progressed. We continued drilling to reach a final depth of 70 meters with a final static water level of 14.7 meters.

The drilling process can take up to three consecutive days to complete due to this region’s hard bedrock, so the drill team set up a camp where they could rest and refuel. The school’s kitchen staff and parents helped provide meals for the team, while the school provided a safe place for the artisans’ accommodations and materials.

Once we reached the required depth, the team replaced the temporary casing with a permanent version, then bailed out the dirty water at the bottom of the well. The workers installed pipes, flushed them, tested the well’s yield, and chlorinated the water.

Water flushing in progress.

After water treatment, we constructed a cement well pad to seal off the well from any ground-level contaminants. Tiles are installed beneath the spout to protect the cement from the erosive force of the water.

We also included a short drainage channel to carry spilled water away from the pump and prevent standing water. A soak pit absorbs runoff at the end of the drainage channel, further eliminating any stagnant water.

When the well pad was dry, we installed a new stainless steel AfriDev handpump and sampled the water for a quality test. The results show this water is safe for drinking!

When the students and teachers arrived back at school, their enthusiasm for this much-anticipated project was overwhelming. We officially handed over the new borehole to the school. The pupils and the community members were overjoyed to see clean water flowing from the borehole. They sang celebration songs thanking God for blessing the school and the community at large.

VIP Latrines

This project funded the installation of six new ventilated improved pit (VIP) latrines: three for the girls and three for the boys. These new latrines have cement floors designed to be easy to use and clean, locking doors for safety and privacy, and vents to keep air flowing up and out through the roof. With a well right on school property, there should be enough water to keep them clean.

Handwashing Stations

We set up two handwashing stations outside of the girls’ and boys’ latrines and handed them over to the newly formed student health club. Health club members will teach other students how to wash their hands at the stations properly, fill the stations with water, and ensure that there is always a cleaning agent available.

New Knowledge

We scheduled hygiene and sanitation training with the school’s staff, who ensured that the training date would be convenient for pupils and teachers. When the training day arrived, facilitators Olivia Bomji, Christine Masinde, and Elvis Afuya deployed to the site to lead the event. 18 students and teachers attended the training, which we held outside on school grounds.

Our training covered several topics, including personal hygiene, oral hygiene, the ten steps of handwashing, environmental hygiene, child rights, leadership, and operation and maintenance of the well and pump, latrines, and handwashing stations.

Students elected their peers to lead their student health club during the leadership session. Members will encourage good health and hygiene practices amongst their peers, teachers, and the larger community. By the end of the training, each pupil understood their role in sustaining clean water and good health within their school community.

Ruth at the well.

"This training helped me to know how to wash hands, take care of the environment and how to make soap," said Ruth, a student and the new health club's secretary. "Learning this has enabled me to know the importance of general sanitation and hygiene."

The most memorable topic was borehole maintenance. The participants wanted to know how the borehole was drilled, how it should be maintained, and how it can be used. Because of the challenges they had concerning access to clean water, they promised to take good care of the borehole so that they access clean and safe water all the time.

Another favorite topic was handwashing. The participants were so happy and thankful to learn the steps of handwashing. To them, it was a new method. They promised to adopt it because it's the only way to ensure that all parts of the hands are washed well.

Students practice handwashing.

When an issue arises concerning the well, the students and teachers are equipped with the necessary skills to rectify the problem and ensure the water point works appropriately. However, if the issue is beyond their capabilities, they can contact our field officers to assist them. Also, we will continue to offer them unmatchable support as a part of our ongoing monitoring and maintenance program.

Thank you for making all of this possible!

April, 2022: Malinda Primary School Well Project Underway!

A severe clean water shortage at Malinda Primary School drains students’ time, energy, and health. Thanks to your generosity, we’re working to install a clean water point and much more.

Get to know this school through the introduction and pictures we’ve posted, and read about this water, sanitation, and hygiene project. We look forward to reaching out with more good news!

Project Photos

Project Type

Abundant water is often right under our feet! Beneath the Earth’s surface, rivers called aquifers flow through layers of sediment and rock, providing a constant supply of safe water. For borehole wells, we drill deep into the earth, allowing us to access this water which is naturally filtered and protected from sources of contamination at the surface level. First, we decide where to drill by surveying the area and determining where aquifers are likely to sit. To reach the underground water, our drill rigs plunge through meters (sometimes even hundreds of meters!) of soil, silt, rock, and more. Once the drill finds water, we build a well platform and attach a hand pump. If all goes as planned, the community is left with a safe, closed water source providing around five gallons of water per minute! Learn more here!

A Year Later: Improved health because of clean water!

May, 2023

A year ago, your generous donation helped Malinda Primary School in Kenya access clean water – creating a life-changing moment for Mr. Sang. Thank you!

Keeping The Water Promise

There's an incredible community of monthly donors who have come alongside you in supporting clean water in Malinda Primary School.

This giving community supports ongoing sustainability programs that help Malinda Primary School maintain access to safe, reliable water. Together, they keep The Water Promise.

We’re confident you'll love joining this world-changing group committed to sustainability!

Teacher Hillary Sang, 38, recalled what life was like at Malinda Primary School before his school’s well was implemented last year.

"Pupils would bring water from outside, which was mostly contaminated because of unknown water sources. This, therefore, made us teachers and pupils get sick from time to time," said Mr. Sang.

"We fetched water from the springs, and we would be chased away by community members. Some pupils would also get to an extent of hurting themselves because they would fall on rocks while fetching. There was wastage of time [in] class, and also we fetched dirty water," said 14-year-old student Hylle.

But life is much more enjoyable for students and teachers at Malinda Primary School now.

"There is no wastage of class time, no carrying of water from home and from springs. There is also access to clean and safe water, and it has also helped to increase personal and environmental hygiene," said Hylle.

Having ready access to water from the well has made a difference for everyone, especially in their health.

"There is access to clean and safe water, which is available throughout the year. There is also improvement of hygiene since water is from one safe source and has reduced cases of sickness because of improved hygiene," said Mr. Sang.

"My health has improved since I drink safe and clean water," concluded Hylle.

Thank you for helping the students and staff at Malinda Primary School access clean water and have more time for learning.

Right now, there are others just like those at Malinda Primary School in neighboring communities that desperately need safe water access. Your support will immediately go to work to provide a clean water project - and we can’t wait to introduce you to the next person you’ll help.

Navigating through intense dry spells, performing preventative maintenance, conducting quality repairs when needed and continuing to assist community leaders to manage water points are all normal parts of keeping projects sustainable. The Water Promise community supports ongoing sustainability programs that help Malinda Primary School maintain access to safe, reliable water.

We’d love for you to join this world-changing group committed to sustainability.

The most impactful way to continue your support of Malinda Primary School – and hundreds of other places just like this – is by joining our community of monthly givers.

Your monthly giving will help provide clean water, every month... keeping The Water Promise.


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