Project Status

Project Type:  Rainwater Catchment

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 500 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Nov 2018

Functionality Status:  Functional

Last Checkup: 02/03/2024

Project Features

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Bumuyange Primary School is located in Senende, which is inhabited by the Tiriki Tribe. The Tiriki are very traditional. This is even seen in schools, where boys are never allowed to do domestic chores like clean the classrooms or fetch water from the spring.

There are 571 students taught by 15 teachers.

Fetching water is the responsibility of girls in this school. There is a small plastic water tank on school grounds, but that's really reserved for the early education students. When it comes to water for the older students, it is all up to the girls. Many of them reach school already tired out, for they are required to balance their school books with a jug of water.

This leads to poor academic performance among girls. The water carried from home each morning isn't enough either, so they waste valuable class time out finding the water their peers need.

The girls prefer to walk to a spring in the community. During the dry seasons, the community members usually crowd at the spring and keep the girls from fetching water. This forces the girls to opt for any other available water - like muddy roadside pools. They fear that they will be punished for returning to school with empty containers. All of the pupils end up getting sick, and stomachaches are constant complaints.

This area also is home to many snakes. On one fateful morning, as the girls were fetching water, a girl named Miriam was bitten by a snake and succumbed to the poison. The incident is still fresh in the minds of students and staff. This incident is what pushed the headteacher to pursue a water project.

We met with some of these girls during their one-hour lunch break. Some of them have to make lunch for themselves and their siblings and often run out of time to finish eating. The teachers end up teaching tired and hungry girls.

"Our students are not healthy because, during our board meetings, the headteacher never fails to express his concerns about increased absenteeism," shared Board Member Joseph Amukhonda.

What we can do:


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.

Handwashing Stations

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. Once finished, this tank can begin catching rainfall that will be used by the school’s students and staff.

We and the school strongly believe that with this assistance, standards will significantly improve. These higher standards will translate to better academic performance! Girls will have the opportunity they deserve.

Project Updates

October, 2019: Giving Update: Bumuyange Primary School

A year ago, your generous donation helped Bumuyange Primary School in Kenya access clean water.

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

November, 2018: Bumuyange Primary School Project Complete

A new rainwater catchment system was built! Bumuyange 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

Our supervisors and quality assurance team visited the school during construction. They used this opportunity to inform the headteacher of the need for hygiene and sanitation training. We asked the headteacher to pick a group of 15-20 student leaders who would form a student-led health club during training. This club promotes good health among their peers.

The turnout was more than we expected, with a few teachers available throughout training. This gave us 25 participants in total. However, we only had 20 notebooks and pens for the students to take notes. This forced us to give only a pen or only a notebook to a few students who said they would feel very sad if they received nothing at all.

We often hold training outside on the meeting grounds as other classes are in session, but the headteacher of Bumuyange insisted that we take one of the classrooms. He said we were very important visitors.

Students were very active together, but were shy to raise their hands to answer questions. Most of them whispered their answers to each other, but we encouraged them to be bold because there was no wrong answer.

The school needed information on how to improve standards of hygiene and to also ensure that the sanitation facilities given to them are maintained to serve the school for years to come. Some of the topics covered include water pollution, personal and environmental hygiene, operations and maintenance of the facilities, group dynamics, leadership, and governance. The group activities equipped the health club to promote hygiene and sanitation awareness at their school.

Students learning about how the tank works and how to best take care of it.

The students enjoyed the session on dental hygiene. Most of them tried to pass off that they brush at least three times a day, but we knew that wasn't true. On a good day, a child has the time and resources to brush in the morning before school.

We reminded students of a song we used to sing when we were young. The song is about the morning routine, reminding the listener about important health habits. We and the students rewrote the lines of this song and called it the "Health Club Song."

Students always like the session on handwashing, since they get to go outside for the demonstrations. We fill the handwashing stations beforehand and make soap available for the demonstrations. Each student is always so eager to practice whatever the trainer demonstrates.

"Being a lower primary school teacher, I had never heard of the ten steps of washing hands. I will train my class on this and we will now be able to fight germs as the hygiene promoters that you have trained us to be," Mrs. Malesi said.

Handwashing Stations

Pupils can now enjoy washing their hands with soap thanks to the two handwashing stations that were delivered to their school.  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 with their peers at school and families at home.

VIP Latrines

This project funded the installation of six new ventilated improved pit 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!

Headteacher Francis spoke with us about how much this project means to him and his students. He shared the following:

It was a pure stroke of luck that this project was implemented in our school this year. We learned about these projects when the hardware materials that were supposed to be delivered to the secondary section landed in our primary section instead. I did not consider this as coincidence, but as an open door that God had set before us.

We allowed the hardware materials to be released to the secondary section and asked the principal for the organization's contact information. We contacted them and they gave us a list of the requirements that we were supposed to fulfill for the project to be successful.

They, however, told us that all slots for 2018 were full and we needed to wait until 2019 for project implementation in our school. I never lost hope and I immediately approached the Hamisi Constituency Fund for funding to get local sand, stones, and bricks to compliment the organization's own materials.

Headteacher Francis proudly stands with his students at their school's new tank.

After the Constituency approved the funds, we started praying to God to give us a chance for this year because our school was very needy. I couldn't believe my luck when I was finally called to MAJI House (office headquarters in Kakamega) and was told that a slot for 2018 had been found. This was a big miracle for us and we return all the thanks to God.

The construction of this tank has been very timely, because very soon our KCPE (Kenya Certificate of Primary Education) candidates will be sitting for their national examinations. We are eagerly waiting for the curing days to be over so that the tank can be cleaned and our candidates will enjoy safe and clean water.

This will save them time and energy that they used to fetch water from the spring during their examinations.

September, 2018: Bumuyange Primary School Project Underway

A severe clean water shortage at Bumuyange 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 your 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

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: Bumuyange Primary School

October, 2019

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

Keeping The Water Promise

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

This giving community supports ongoing sustainability programs that help Bumuyange 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!

Much has changed at Bumuyange Primary School since the installation of their WaSH facilities last year. On a recent visit, we heard from students and staff how the pupils are now healthier, which means they attend school much more regularly and get better grades overall. Due to the hygiene behavior change, they are much more likely to complete school and pursue opportunities that will help them break the cycle of extreme poverty that has plagued their community for generations.

"Since the tank was constructed, there has been a reduction in the in and out movement in the school. The pupils are now able to settle in class and we have noticed an improvement in the mean score of the upper classes. The pupils are now accessing clean water for drinking without sharing containers or mishandling water from different unknown sources. We have noticed a reduction in diarrhea and a reduction in the spread of HIV from [no longer] sharing drinking water from the same containers," said Head Teacher Mr. Francis Shibira.

Norman Chogo is a 15-year-old student at Bumuyange Primary School, and he shared his perspective on how these WaSH projects have impacted his experience as a learner.

"As a candidate who is about to sit for the national examinations in 2 weeks, I've really enjoyed my last year in this school. I've had enough time to study and I'm looking forward to performing well. I invested the time I used to spend fetching water in studying and revision."

Head Teacher Mr. Shibira and students Irene and Norman with Field Officer Mary Afandi at the rain tank

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 Bumuyange 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 Bumuyange 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 - The McAvoy Family