Project Status

Project Type:  Borehole Well and Hand Pump

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 465 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Feb 2023

Functionality Status:  Functional

Last Checkup: 03/07/2024

Project Features

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The 452 students and 13 staff of Kipsigor Primary School all rely on one 5,000-liter rain tank to meet all their drinking, cooking, and cleaning needs. Even if the tank were to magically fill up each morning, it would still not be enough to sustain the school community. But the tank is hardly ever full, and there is never enough water.

So students must fetch water from outside school grounds. They are forced to choose when they should sacrifice some of their free time to supply the school with water: before school, which means they will miss morning prep and potentially be late to class, or during lunch, which means they won't get any sort of break throughout the day.

"When there is no water at the school, we are forced to go downstream to fetch water," said 13-year-old student, Valentine Y., shown filling her water container in the photo above. "[The stream] is located a mile away from the school. This is tiresome and, at the same time, consumes our study time."

But time is not the only cost of this water crisis. Although the water from the school's rain tank has never been treated, it is arguably better than the visibly dirty water from the nearby stream, which often infects students and staff with water-related illnesses.

"During [the] dry season, we suffer a lot," said 38-year-old teacher Osoro Jared, shown in the photo above supervising some students as they fill their jerrycans. "[The] downstream water is too dirty, and because we don't have a choice, students [drink] that water like that. Then they get sick and miss school for even a week."

Adequate water on school grounds will not only improve students health and keep them in class, but it will give them a cleaner learning environment in which to learn.

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

February, 2023: Kipsigor Primary School Well Complete!

We are excited to share that Kipsigor 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.

"I will now have good health and attend school [more] regularly than before when I used to be sick after consuming dirty water from the passing river," said 13-year-old Elizabeth V.

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

"We have been consuming dirty water for long time, which has been affecting our health and makes some of us miss school. But from now onwards, I believe absenteeism cases [are] going to reduce," said 39-year-old teacher Jared Osoro.

Mr. Osoro with students at the new well.

"This water point is going to help us achieve a lot," Jared continued. "For instance, cleanliness. We have been cleaning our classrooms once a week, but things are going to change. At least, we will be doing cleanliness every day in the evening. Secondly, we have been wasting a lot of time while going to collect water outside [the] school compound, but now all this is going to change. No more time-wasting or interfering with lessons to go fetching water, and I know coming next year, our school performance will have positive feedback."

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, 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 100 meters with a final static water level of 45 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.

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 showed this water was safe for drinking!

We officially handed over the new borehole to the school.

"In this community, getting clean and safe water has been a very big challenge. So the water point the school has benefited from is going to make a big positive impact not only for the school but also for the community members around as they are going to consume clean water," said our field officer Stella Inganji.

Students and staff celebrated the presence of clean water on campus. The event was an excellent chance 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 at their latrine.

This project funded the installation of six new ventilated improved pit (VIP) latrines. 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 the 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 Stella and Betty deployed to the site to lead the event. 18 students and teachers attended the training, which we held under a tree in the school courtyard.

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.

Training participants.

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.

Discussing oral hygiene.

Dental hygiene was a popular topic during the training. Students were asked when they last brushed their teeth, but some could not recall, and one of the students said he has not been brushing his teeth because he didn't have a toothbrush.

"So because we carry along some toothbrushes, we gave [one] to all the participants, who were happy and promised to be brushing their teeth daily," said trainer Stella Inganji.


"The training has come at the right time because, for some time now, we have not been cleaning our classrooms using soap, just because the soap has been expensive, and getting it also hasn't been easy," said 12-year-old Akim A. "But now, with the new knowledge of soap-making, we are going to make our own soap, which we will use to clean our classes and use for handwashing too."


This project required a substantial collaboration between our staff, our in-country teams, and the community members themselves. 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 their local field officers to assist them.

Also, we will continue to offer them unmatchable support as a part of our monitoring and maintenance program. We walk with each community, problem-solving together when they face challenges with functionality, seasonality, or water quality. Together, all these components help us strive for enduring access to reliable, clean, and safe water for this community.

With your contribution, one more piece has been added to a large puzzle of water projects. In our target areas, we’re working toward complete coverage of reliable, maintained water sources within a 30-minute round trip for each community, household, school, and health center. With this in mind, search through our upcoming projects to see which community you can help next!

Thank you for making all of this possible!

December, 2022: Kipsigor Primary School Well Project Underway!

A severe clean water shortage at Kipsigor 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: Clean Water, Improved Academics!

April, 2024

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

Keeping The Water Promise

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

This giving community supports ongoing sustainability programs that help Kipsigor 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!

Fluorine, 13, recalled what life was like at the Kipsigor Primary School before her school's well was installed last year.

"I used to go far to fetch water to be used in school. This wasted my time, and in most cases, I would be punished by the teacher on duty. Sometimes, I fell ill from typhoid because of drinking water from different sources," she shared.

Collecting water is now less complicated for Fluorine and the other students at the school.

"I no longer come with water from home to school. This borehole has really helped since I don't fall sick anymore. Water is readily available, and [it's] always clean because it is from one source," Fluorine continued.

Having ready access to water from the well has made a difference for Fluorine. It allows her to easily collect sufficient water and remain healthy. The time she once sacrificed to illness is now put to good use!

"I have improved in my studies greatly. Water from this borehole [well] helped in our class programs, especially in agriculture. We plant vegetables that, in turn, are used in school," she concluded.

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 Kipsigor 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 Kipsigor 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.


Project Sponsor - H2O for Life
Project Sponsor - H2O for Life
HCCS' Campaign for Water
8 individual donor(s)