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The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Water Storage In The Kitchen
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Drinking Water Storage Outside Staffroom
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Spring Water Is Stored Here
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Students Delivering Stream Water To The School Chef
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Students Carrying Water
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Students Carrying Water
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Students Carrying Water
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Waiting To Cross A Busy Road With Motorbikes
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Students Carry Water Back To School
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Students Collecting Spring Water
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Communual Spring Shared With Students
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Students Collect Stream Water
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Stream That Serves Both The School And The Community
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  A Man Cleans His Motorbike Where Students Fetch Water
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Girls Head To The Stream To Get Water
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Damaged Standpipe On School Grounds
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Play While Out On Break
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Garbage Disposal Site Next To Ladies Latrines
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Bosy Rushing To Their Latrines
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  The Gents Latrines With A Urinal
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  The Gents Latrine Blocks
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Girls Rushing To The Latrines
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  The Ladies Latrine Blocks
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Teacher Mr Soita
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Students In Class
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Student Timinah
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Student Wafula Passing Information To Class From Their Teacher
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Sir Martin Heading A Mathematics Session
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Food Cooking Inside The Kitchen
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Dishrack And Water Storage In The Kitchen
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  School Chef Washing Dishes Outside The Kitchen
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Classrooms
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  Grounds
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  School Gate
The Water Project: Namagara Primary School -  School Sign

Project Status



Project Type:  Borehole Well and Hand Pump

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Project Phase:  Donate to this Project
Estimated Install Date (?):  10/29/2022

Project Features


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“Sometimes the community members deny us water because a few students tend to damage their farm produce so we can stay thirsty a whole day because we cannot get the spring water – that is the only water we drink.”

This is the reality of the water crisis for the 719 students and 20 teachers and staff at Namagara Primary School, as explained by student Timinah. This school’s fight for clean water has been a difficult one with many ups and downs, but they refuse to rest until their students have clean water.

The school’s main water source is supposed to be a standpipe that was installed on school grounds, but for the last year, the pipe has sat damaged and unusable. The tap was stolen and the pipe cut, making the water point completely nonfunctional. There have not been any communications or repairs from the water company to help fix this pipe.

Now, more than 700 students are back to relying on 2 different water sources in the community for all of their drinking, cooking, and cleaning needs. Drinking water is collected from a spring located downhill from a community member’s farm which relies heavily on animal manure. A large amount of it is visible in the spring area. The spring’s makeshift protection was not done up to standard, allowing the uphill farm runoff to seep into the spring. The spring water itself sports particles in it, indicating damage from within the spring box. The water here is not safe for consumption, and the spring’s discharge is said to be extremely low over the dry season. With long lines for both students and community members to fetch water, this is where arguments and bad feelings come into play such as Timinah mentioned.

There is also a stream in the community where students are supposed to fetch the water used only for cooking and cleaning, but Head Teacher Mr. Felix Soita noted that some mischievous kids fetch it for drinking anyway to avoid going to the spring, which is further away. The stream is used by everyone and everything in the community. Some bodaboda men (motorcycle taxi drivers) wash their motorcycles in it, and others take their animals there to drink. Women will also wash their clothes directly in the stream. All of these clear signs of contamination are done mostly upstream from where the students fetch water, as the stream is shallower and a little slower there.

The stream water is extremely unsafe to drink, yet the cross-contamination of dirty water and dirty containers is all too common at school. At one point a few years back, a community member died of misdiagnosed cholera as a result of drinking the stream water. The community was cautioned against this water source and since then most people stopped drinking from the stream, but the school still relies on it for their needs. Currently, using the dirty stream water has made both students and teachers develop chronic diarrhea and dysentery, among other symptoms.

“As for me, I cannot drink this water. Every time I drink water that is not clean, it only takes a few seconds before pain emanates from my throat and this has cost me peace and a lot of money. To be on the safe side, I only drink boiled warm water,” said Head Teacher Soita.

Time wastage and incomplete syllabi have been linked to the frequent water collection trips outside of the school compound. The first trip is made as early as 7:30 am when students are supposed to clean the school compound, followed by more trips throughout the day since students are asked to fetch water whenever it is needed. Students tend to make merry while out of class which has really poked into class time, teachers report. School finances have also been hit hard as a result of treating the illnesses arising from drinking the dirty water.

Namagara Primary School began in 1937 under the sponsorship of the Seventh Day Adventist Church and the community, originally hosting 180 pupils. The reason behind its establishment was to counter the distance their children walked to the other nearest schools, all of which were located more than 8 kilometers away and required pupils to cross dangerous rivers without bridges. Today, these pupils’ challenges with water have taken a new form, but their fight for clean water continues.

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, the school’s students and staff will use water from the well and staff for drinking, handwashing, cooking, cleaning, and much more.

The school and we 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 unlock the opportunity for these students to live better, healthier lives.

Handwashing Stations

The student health club will oversee the two new handwashing stations we will provide and ensure 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

Two triple-door latrine blocks will be constructed with local materials that the school will help gather. Three doors will serve the girls, and three doors will serve the boys. These new latrines will have cement floors designed to be easy to use and clean. And with a rain tank 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, prevention; personal and environmental hygiene; and the operation and maintenance of the rain tank, latrines, and handwashing stations. There will be a special emphasis on handwashing.

Our team of facilitators will use various 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 home. We will also lead lectures, group discussions and provide illustrative handouts to teach health topics and promote good hygiene practices within the school, including handwashing and water treatment. We will then conduct a series of follow-up training before transitioning to our regularly scheduled support visits throughout the year.

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Project Photos


Project Type

Borehole and Hand Pump

Girls and women walk long distances for water when safe water is very often right under their feet! Underground rivers, called aquifers, often contain a constant supply of safe water – but you have to get to it. No matter what machine or piece of equipment is used, all drilling is aiming for a borehole that reaches into an aquifer. If the aquifer has water - and after the well is developed - we are able to pull water to the surface utilizing a hand-pump. If all goes as planned, the community is left with a safe, closed water source providing around 5 gallons of water a minute through a hand-pump.


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