Project Status

Project Type:  Rainwater Catchment

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 258 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Aug 2018

Functionality Status:  Functional

Last Checkup: 02/10/2024

Project Features

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Community Profile

A normal day at St. Peters Erusui Mixed Secondary School is a busy day. The students here are busy fighting the odds to be successful in their studies. From the entrance, the school looks like it's doing so well - you can't imagine it could be having such big problems. But after a tour inside, you see some students studying under a tree because there aren't enough classrooms.

There are 247 students taught by just nine teachers. The school also employs two support staff.

Water Situation

There is no place to get water at school. A nearby church has a 2,000-liter water tank they let the students use. The principal said that "getting water from the church is tricky at times since church members use it. Students would find lines at the tank, making students miss lessons mostly just because of water." The church has also opened its doors as an extra place for lessons.

When the 2,000 liters of rainwater is finished, students must carry water from home or go out into the surrounding community to find water. Finding enough water to stay in school is actually the biggest reason children are missing class.

Sanitation Situation

The school has few pit latrines that are not maintained well. The administration admits that this could be a big factor in the high level of diarrhea cases students and staff experience.

The few buildings in the school are not well ventilated, and most students suffer from asthma.

And there just isn't enough water to maintain good standards. Even if the school put out containers for handwashing, there wouldn't be water available.

Headteacher Fauzia Mmata said, "If we could only get even one tank that we would use to harvest rainwater, then we could reduce the high rate of diarrhea in this school and help hygiene and raise the school's performance."

Hygiene and Sanitation 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 for mixing cement. 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 borrow water from the church nor look for it in the greater community.

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

September, 2019: Giving Update: Erusui Secondary School

A year ago, your generous donation helped Erusui Secondary School in Kenya access clean water.

There’s an incredible community of monthly donors who have come alongside you in supporting clean water at Erusui Secondary School. Month after month, their giving supports ongoing sustainability programs that help this school maintain access to safe, reliable water. Read more…

August, 2018: Erusui Secondary School Project Complete

A new rainwater catchment system is now complete! Erusui Secondary 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

The principal had teachers work together to select four student leaders from each class to represent their peers. She also invited two parents and another teacher to attend. Many of the students there had already helped a lot during tank construction, gathering water to mix cement. They were eager to learn about their new water source during training because of the dedication they had already shown our artisans.

The institution has an infrastructure issue to the extent that some students must study outside under trees. Due to lack of enough classrooms, hygiene and sanitation training was also carried out under the trees. Just about thirty minutes into the second session of training, the skies turned darker and darker; then came the heavy winds and raindrops. We were all running around seeking shelter in different places, then reached an agreement to postpone the rest of training until the following day.

Everyone was engrossed in group discussions, but one teacher, who is also a leader at a nearby church, was the most interesting participant. She asked so many questions, especially in the area of hygiene challenges affecting girls. She has been a leader with a burden for young people, for she has seen a lot of issues come up in her years of ministry. She was able to teach participants valuable knowledge acquired over the years, and also learned a lot of new things for herself.

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. Students and teachers have also banded together to form a student health club that will recruit even more members to promote health at school and at home.

There was such an extreme interest in nutrition! Students had the hardest time accepting that soda pop is bad for them. They tried everything they could to convince us that soda pop is OK. Maybe if you drink enough water, it will wash all of the bad parts of soda away? They were also shocked to hear that too much red meat is not good. The trainers had to move step by step to convince students that soda and lots of meat really would have a harmful impact on their bodies.

Student Sharon Khajina said, "For these two days, we have been able to acquire very important knowledge that we would not have found in any other place. We request that you go to other schools and teach them the same because we need the whole of Shamakhokho location to get out of ignorance and keep away from such problems that can be avoided."

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.

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 is a success!

Parents, staff, and students helped our artisans gather everything needed for construction. 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.

Sifting sand to mix quality cement

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 steps to the tap installed.

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

Felix Akalomba

"We used to insert a pipe into the local church tank to get water because its tap was broken. Now we have a new and beautiful tank that has a tap for easy drawing of water. Water will not splash on us again as we bring water back to school. We will be dry all over, and that boosts our esteem even as we walk along the road," Student Felix Akalomba said.

"We are now very proud of our school!"

The principal is confident that with these resources, new students will enroll at Erusui Secondary School. And as the local government sees this growth, they will subsidize the construction of much-needed classroom facilities. This clean water will have a bigger impact that we can even imagine!

June, 2018: Artisans Working at Erusui Secondary School

We just received official word that construction is happening at Erusui Secondary School. Artisans have arrived on school grounds to work on a rainwater catchment tank and latrines and will remain in the area until the work is finished. Secondary students are currently on a short break before next term. It's wonderful to know that a new clean water source will be there when they return.

We will reach out again as soon as we have more information; most likely when both training and construction are complete. We are looking forward to sharing the clean water celebration with you!

May, 2018: Erusui Secondary School Scheduling

Artisans arrived at Erusui Secondary School late this month. This will delay our training since we prefer to use the completed tank and latrines during our management and care demonstrations. Please bear with us as we work closely with the school to best encourage and support students, teachers, and their parents as we bring them a lasting source of clean water. We are excited that the artisans are ready to begin, and we look forward to sharing great news soon!

January, 2018: Erusui Secondary School Project Underway

Erusui Secondary 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! Thank you for noticing the need here, and we’ll keep you posted as the work continues. For now, please enjoy the new stories, pictures, and maps of this school.

Project Photos

Project Type

For a rainwater collection system, we build gutters around a building with good, clean roofing to channel rain where we want it. From there, the water falls through a filtered inlet pipe into a high-capacity storage tank, the size of which is based on population and average rainfall patterns. In the tank, water can be stored for months, where it is easily treated and accessed. Learn more here!

Giving Update: Erusui Secondary School

September, 2019

A year ago, your generous donation helped Erusui Secondary School in Kenya access clean water – creating a life-changing moment for Calvar Alionya. Thank you!

Keeping The Water Promise

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

This giving community supports ongoing sustainability programs that help Erusui Secondary 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!

The lives of many students at Erusui Secondary School have really changed over the last year since we installed their WaSH projects. Students now have water right inside their school compound, and no longer have to leave school to find it. Secondly, cleanliness has visibly improved and students are using water for domestic purposes such as cooking, bathing, and cleaning their classrooms.

From our observations during a recent visit there, Erusui Secondary School is quite grateful for the rain tank and sanitation facilities. Much has been achieved academically by the students who now have more time to focus on studying and are able to stay in class, instead of going to fetch water. Further, the cost of buying water has been cut off thanks to the rain tank, helping the school put more money toward other development projects and investments.

"The school hygiene standards have greatly improved in that most students no longer complain about waterborne diseases, which were the major challenge in school," said teacher Mrs. Gloria Tsindoria.

"This [change] has created time for us to study without disturbance and [has led to] improvement in [the] mean school grade."

Teacher Mrs. Gloria Tsindoria

Calvar Alionya a 19-year-old student at the school echoed Mrs. Tsindoria's thoughts.

Gloria and student Calvar

"We no longer go outside the school looking for water and this has given us humble concentrate on our studies. It has also helped us improve our hygiene standards in terms of individual and environmental cleanliness."

Field Officer Erick with Gloria and Calvar

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 Erusui Secondary 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 Erusui Secondary 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.