Project Status

Project Type:  Borehole Well and Hand Pump

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 1,117 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Apr 2022

Functionality Status:  Functional

Last Checkup: 04/05/2024

Project Features

Click icons to learn about each feature.

Shamoni Primary School has felt disadvantaged for a long time when it comes to accessing water. The water source for the 1,117 students and staff is a nearby well located at the senior school, which serves both schools and many community members. It is severely overcrowded.

Sadly, especially when the well is overcrowded, the senior students bully the younger ones quite extensively. It is an ongoing problem that teachers are addressing by ensuring that the primary students can safely collect water while the high school students are in class.

Teacher Margaret Ngutuk, age 52, shared, "I pity our small children whenever the senior students push them aside at the borehole during games time for both schools. We interfere with their lessons so that at least they can fetch the water peacefully when the high school students are in class. This has affected their learning and our teaching too."

Students fetch water after their morning assembly and again in the afternoon after the high schoolers have their lunch. This time should be their class time, so, unfortunately, their learning suffers.

Ahimidiwe, a 14-year-old student, shared his frustration with being bullied by the students from the senior school. "Sometimes, I wish we had our own water source. The senior students bully us so much at the borehole that I fear fetching water whenever I see them at the borehole. Our lessons have to be interfered [with] for us to fetch water. I waste a lot because those minutes are so precious when it comes to learning."

Having a well at Shamoni will end the interruption in the younger students' learning and allow them to enjoy their school day without fear.

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

April, 2022: Shamoni Primary School Well Complete!

We are excited to share that Shamoni Primary School in Kenya now has access to a new source of safe, clean water, 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 installed new latrines and handwashing stations for students, and we trained the school on improved sanitation and hygiene practices, including COVID-19 prevention. These components work together to unlock the opportunity for these students to live better, healthier lives.

Students are excited about clean water!

Ahimidiwe, 15, said, "The water point is so close to my classroom, and I am so happy. I can dash out whenever I am thirsty, and a teacher is not in class. No more crowding at the high school borehole."

Ahimidiwe washing his hands.

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

"Psychologically, it's a relief for me as a teacher in this school. It used to bother me so much seeing our little children, especially in the lower grades, get bullied at the high school borehole. I will have peace of mind seeing them draw water from this new water point with no one to harass them," said teacher Margaret Ngutuk.

Teacher Margaret Ngutuk collects water.

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 through the government to begin drilling the new well.

To prepare for the project, the school helped collect fine sand and water for our artisans to use in making cement. When everything was ready and the students went home from class for the weekend (drilling is a very loud process!), our drill team and staff arrived at the school to begin work.

Drilling begins.

The drilling process can take up to three consecutive days to complete due to this region’s hard bedrock, so when the drill team arrived, they set up a small camp where they could rest and refuel in shifts near the drill rig. The school’s kitchen staff and a few parents helped provide meals for the team, while the school provided a safe place for the artisans’ accommodations and materials. People of all ages came to watch the well’s progress throughout each day.

Drilling commenced with excitement in the air. As the rig progressed, the team drove down a temporary casing to keep the walls from collapsing. We continued drilling to reach a final depth of 65 meters with a final static water level of nine meters.

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

Following chlorination, we constructed a cement well pad to seal off the well from any ground-level contaminants. The pad includes tiles beneath the drawing area to help protect the cement from the erosive force of the water, and a short drainage channel to carry spilled water away from the pump, preventing standing water at the access point. At the end of the drainage channel, we also dug a soak pit that helps absorb the runoff into the ground, further eliminating stagnant water.

When the well pad was dry, we installed a new stainless steel AfriDev handpump and took a water quality test to send to a government lab. The results came back announcing that this water is safe for drinking!

Building the pump.

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.

Joy for clean water!

Students and staff celebrated the presence of clean water on campus. The event was an excellent chance for us to acknowledge the school administration and students as the primary parties entrusted with the tools we have given and remind them of our continued support as they develop. Happiness, thanksgiving, and appreciation were the order of the day, flowing in all directions.

VIP Latrines

Boys celebrating their new latrine.

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 designed 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

The two handwashing stations were set up during training and handed over to the student health club. These were placed outside of the girls’ and boys’ latrines to encourage handwashing after latrine use. Health club members will teach other students how to wash their hands at the stations properly, make sure the stations are filled with water, and ensure that there is always a cleaning agent such as soap or ash 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 Amos, Elvis, and Lillian deployed to the site to lead the event. 32 students, teachers, and parents attended the training, which we held outside under trees on the school campus.

We focused on COVID-19 prevention, transmission, and symptoms while also covering several other topics. These included personal hygiene such as bathing, oral hygiene, and the ten steps of handwashing; environmental hygiene; child rights; operation and maintenance of the well and pump, latrines, and handwashing stations; and leadership and governance. During the latter, the students elected their peers to lead their newly formed student health club.

Students practice elbow greetings.

The club will be significantly involved in the water, sanitation, and hygiene project management at school. It will be responsible for encouraging good health and hygiene practices amongst their peers, teachers, and the larger community. We involved stretches, dances, and physical activities between each topic to keep the pupils’ energy up and their minds active. By the end of the training, each pupil understood their role in sustaining clean water and good health within their school community.

Soapmaking session.

Project maintenance and operation was a favorite topic for the students. During the session, the participants asked their teachers to lock their new borehole. They had heard rumors of the high school students who formerly bullied them admiring their new waterpoint and want to keep it safe.

Student Ahimidiwe, 15, said, "I used to personally waste so much time at the borehole pumping water for the high school students. They would not allow me [to] draw water without having them quench their thirst first. My class time would then be affected making me miss some points because I would find the teacher already going on with the intended lesson. With our own waterpoint, I'll be able to attend every lesson on time and with this, I'll better my results."

Ahimidiwe and classmates at the new well.

"The training has opened my eyes on so so many things including how to maintain the borehole," said Dancun B., chairman of the child health club.

Dancun collecting water at the new well.

He continued, "I have always pumped wrongly at the old borehole. I never knew that hitting the pump up and down could destroy the pump."

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!

February, 2022: Shamoni Primary School Well Underway!

A severe clean water shortage at Shamoni 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: "We have our water in school."

June, 2023

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

Keeping The Water Promise

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

This giving community supports ongoing sustainability programs that help Shamoni 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!

Brivian A., 13, recalled what life was like at Shamoni Primary School before her school’s well was implemented last year.

"Initially, very early in the morning, I used to wake up and go to draw water from the spring to take to school. Sometimes during [the] daytime, as a class, we went outside to look for water. This, in return, interfered with our lessons, thus lowering my academic performance," said Brivian.

But life is much less burdensome for Brivian and the other students at Shamoni Primary School now.

"After the completion of the project, there is now no more carrying of water from home again. It has helped me to go to school early," continued Brivian.

Having ready access to water from the well has made a difference for Brivian, allowing her to focus on her studies.

"I have really improved in class because the lessons are not interfered [with] during [the] daytime to go and look for water. We have our water in school. I am so happy for it," she concluded.

Thank you for helping Brivian access clean water and create a brighter future for herself.

Right now, there are others just like her 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 Shamoni 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 Shamoni 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.


2021 Holiday Matching Gifts
87 individual donor(s)