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The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Samantha And Faith
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Ngesa And Mercy
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Clean Water
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Indeche Erickson Leading A Team Of Pupils To Celebrate Clean Water
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Little Nulin Kayeshe Shares Her Joy By Smiling After Trying Water From The Tank
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  New Latrines
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Handwashing Station
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Anjala And Belinda Washing Their Hands After Visiting The Latrine
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Emily Kadesa Saniation And Hygiene Teacher
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Latrine Construction
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Latrine Construction
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Finishing The Catchment Area
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Fixing The Pipe
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Tank Foundation
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Mixing Cement
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Carrying Dirt To The Construction Site
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Shuttling Bricks
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Albert Anjichi
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Outside Demonstrations
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Sara Demonstrating Handwashing
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Outside Demonstrations
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Outside Demonstrations
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Outside Demonstrations
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Outside Demonstrations
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Picking Up Litter
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Picking Up Litter
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Girls Latrine Line
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Students
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Carrying Water
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Students Fetching Water At A Flowing River
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  School Motto
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  School Compound
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Classroom
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Students In Class
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Erick Wanjala
The Water Project: Mwanzo Primary School -  Students

Project Status

Project Type:  Rainwater Catchment

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 389 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Aug 2018

Functionality Status:  Functional

Last Checkup: 06/15/2019

Project Features

Click icons to learn about each feature.

Community Profile

Mwanzo Primary School is located in Vihiga County, Kenya. Total student enrollment is 375, and the school employs 12 teachers.

Learning starts at 7am every morning with an hour study hall. Normal lessons are from 8am to 4pm. Many primary school graduates end up going straight into the motorcycle transport industry – popularly known as ‘Boda-Boda.’ Many women do small business likes selling vegetables from their gardens.

Water Situation

There are two breaks between morning lessons when students are sent to fetch water from an open water source. Students dip jerrycans of five to 10 liters under the flowing water until they’re full. This water is so dirty; even animals drink directly from the stream! Nonetheless, it is used for drinking and cleaning. After drinking this water, students suffer from waterborne diseases.

Sanitation Situation

There are nine filthy pit latrines split up among the students. There are too few latrines for all of these students, so students wait uncomfortably in long lines during class break. There isn’t anywhere for them to wash their hands after, either.

What we can do:

Training and Handwashing Stations

Training will be held for two days. The facilitator will use PHAST (participatory hygiene and sanitation transformation), ABCD (asset-based community development), CTC (child to child), lectures, group discussions, and handouts to teach health topics and ways to promote good practices within the school. The CTC method will prepare students to lead other students into healthy habits, as well as kickstart a CTC club for the school. This CTC club will oversee the new facilities, such as handwashing stations, and make sure they are kept clean and in working condition. The two handwashing stations will be delivered to the school, and the club will fill them with water on a daily basis and make sure there is always a cleaning agent such as soap or ash.

VIP Latrines

Two triple-door latrines will be constructed with local materials that the school will help gather. Three doors will serve the girls while the other three serve the boys. And with a new source of water on school grounds, students and staff should have enough to keep these new latrines clean.

Rainwater Catchment Tank

A 50,000-liter rainwater catchment tank will help alleviate the water crisis at this school. The school will also help gather the needed materials such as sand, rocks, and water from the spring for mixing cement (students have already started helping). Once finished, this tank can begin catching rainfall that will be used by the school’s students and staff. Students will no longer have to spend their breaks going out to get dirty water.

The headteacher told us, “I’m a happy man because this project you are bringing us will transform the whole village for sure. I pray that I will live and continue teaching here for many more years so as to witness and be a part of the success!” We and the school strongly believe that with this assistance, standards will significantly improve. These higher standards will translate to better academic performance.

This project is a part of our shared program with Western Water And Sanitation Forum (WEWASAFO). Our team is pleased to provide the reports for this project (edited for clarity) thanks to the hard work of our friends in Kenya.

Project Updates

08/13/2018: Clean Water at Mwanzo Primary School

A new rainwater catchment system was built! Mwanzo Primary School in Kenya now has a new source of safe, clean water thanks to your support. Handwashing stations were installed so that students can clean up after using their new latrines, and students and staff have received training in sanitation and hygiene.

New Knowledge

We worked with the headteacher to plan a convenient date for hygiene and sanitation training. Student leaders were picked to represent each class, who accompanied teachers, board members, and parents to attend. The school could only find the space and time for training during the academic holiday, so we were a little worried that the people we invited wouldn’t show up.

We were happy to find 14 people waiting for us in a classroom on a drizzly morning.

Thankfully, by the time we had to go outside to teach about tank management and maintenance, the rain had subsided. The lighting inside the dark classroom was not good for photos, but we were able to get some good shots of our outside activities.

We covered several topics, including bathing, oral hygiene, and handwashing with soap as a barrier from germs; operation and maintenance of the new facilities, with each person understanding their role for long-lasting clean water and good health. The student participants also started a student health club that will oversee health promotion both at school and at home.

Sara demonstrates handwashing to her peers as one of their teachers looks on.

Students and especially parents appreciated the training on solar disinfection, which only requires a clear container, time, and direct sunlight. They confirmed that this treatment method would save their families a lot of money that would have been used to buy chlorine.

The students felt so inspired after learning how to take care of their new rainwater catchment tank. They want to start a farm club to plant vegetables, which would cover the cost if a gutter or tap ever needed replacement.

The school administration gathers near to hear about tank maintenance.

Teacher Albert Anjichi said, “Being qualified to get a project is not something that just happens. This is an answered prayer. There is poor health in this area and that is why we also really needed this training. We will do as you have told because we need this water and we also need to exercise good health the way you have trained us… because we need to be healthy!”

Handwashing Stations

Pupils can now enjoy washing their hands with soap thanks to the two handwashing stations that were delivered to their school. Before, there was nowhere to wash hands. These new handwashing opportunities will help reduce cases of hygiene-related illness. The training on hygiene has motivated these students to share what they’ve learned both with their peers at school and families at home.

Understanding the importance of handwashing, students from the new health club have also built new handwashing stations from empty containers.

VIP Latrines

This project funded the installation of six new ventilated improved pit (VIP) latrines. All of these new latrines have cement floors that are easy to use and clean. And with a rainwater catchment tank, there should be enough water to keep them clean all the time.

Rainwater Catchment Tank

Construction for this 50,000-liter rainwater catchment tank was successful! Rainy weather was the only challenge. It could start raining first thing in the morning, delaying any cement work the artisans wanted to do. It took patience to wait for the right time to plaster the foundation, walls and dome!

Parents, staff, and students helped our artisans gather everything needed for construction. Students were especially helpful in shuttling bricks to the artisans during their class breaks. They were so excited to see the finished latrines and tanks! All the while, women cooked meals for the artisans, and the school provided accommodations for the artisans during their work. Local men and women helped our artisans with their manual labor, too.

The process officially began with our staff and school administration looking around the school compound to try and determine the best location for a new rainwater catchment tank. This needed to be the best site with good, clean roofing to catch the rainwater.

Then, we cleared the site: excavating the soil within the required measurements to make level ground for the tank foundation. The foundation was cast by laying stones on a level ground and then reinforcing it using steel, concrete and waterproof cement.

Both the drawing pipe as well as the washout pipe were affixed as the foundation was lain. The wall was built with ferro-cement techniques through six layers. The inner wall was plastered while rough casting was done on the outer part.

Dome construction could begin after the superstructure had been given enough time to settle. The manhole cover was fitted, inlet pipes were connected to the roof gutters, inlet screens, ventilation pipes (breathers) and overflow pipes were all done to standard.

Finally, the catchment area was dug, plastered, and a staircase installed.

Once finished, the tank was given three weeks to undergo complete curing before it was cleaned and handed over to Mwanzo Primary School, though we will continue to offer them unmatchable support as a part of our monitoring and maintenance program.

The school headteacher together and the other staff members organized a special thanksgiving ceremony. The event was planned to thank God for enabling success, despite the hurdles of mobilizing for the construction materials and the rains that kept interfering with construction work.

“We are very grateful for the project that has been brought to our school,” Teacher Emily Kadesa said.

Teacher Emily Kadasia stands proudly by her school’s rainwater catchment tank.

“We promise to take care of the facilities and ensure that we do not go back to the water problems we had in the past. This tank is very beautiful and its water very clean. It is now the pride of ADC Mwanzo, therefore we will jealously guard it!”

The Water Project : 21-kenya18018-indeche-erickson-leading-a-team-of-pupils-to-celebrate-clean-water

06/05/2018: Mwanzo Primary School Underway

We’re excited to share that artisans have arrived (we’re certain!) at Mwanzo Primary School to build a rainwater catchment tank and latrines. As construction progresses, students, teachers, and parent representatives will attend an important training about their health at school, home, and the greater community. Thank you for your patience, and we look forward to reaching out very soon with news of clean water!

The Water Project : 1-kenya18018-students

04/20/2018: News from Mwanzo Primary School

Dear Friends, we just received word from the field that the tank and latrine construction are delayed. We’re moving the completion date back by three months. We continue to work with this school as they prepare for our artisans.

Thank you for standing with us to provide clean water for these students!

The Water Project : 10-kenya18018-students

02/01/2018: Mwanzo Primary School Project Underway

Mwanzo Primary School in Kenya has begun building a new source of safe, clean water because of your generous donation. A rainwater catchment tank and new latrines are being constructed, hand-washing stations provided, and the school is being trained on proper sanitation and hygiene practices. Imagine the impact this will have on these students! For now, please enjoy the new stories, pictures, and maps of this school. We look forward to reaching out again soon!

The Water Project : 10-kenya18018-students

Project Photos

Project Type

Rainwater Catchment

Rainwater is collected off strategic areas of a roof, enters a custom guttering system (which filters out debris) and leads to a storage tank. Tanks can vary in sizes and are determined by population and average rainfall patterns. Water can be stored for months, is easily treated in the tank, and is accessible through taps. These projects are implemented at schools with proper roof lines and gutter systems to make them successful.


Project Underwriter - Romac Industries Inc.
USPA Europe
5 individual donor(s)