Green Mount Primary School does not have a reliable water source. Pipes are connected to a local water service, but they're dry all the time. The school management has even made efforts to contact their water service to find out what's going on, but this has been in vain.
To try alleviating their water shortage, the school has bought a 50, 100, and 5,000-liter plastic tank to store rainwater. But due to high student enrollment of 756, the school is forced to buy water from lorries (trucks) and pay locals to bring water to school.
The lorries most often fill their tanks with water from open rivers, and locals bring water from their various villages. This water is not safe, with many people admitting that they fill their containers at River Iskhu.
As a result of drinking the water, children are often affected by waterborne diseases, suffering from diarrhea, headaches, coughs and stomachaches. Students miss school, and parents spend a lot of money treating those affected by waterborne diseases due to drinking unsafe water. As we conducted our baseline, we heard of many children out being treated for typhoid.
"When we get this rainwater harvesting tank in our school, water problems will be solved. Waterborne diseases will be reduced and that will stop our children from being absent from school," shared Headteacher Witika Maina.
The school is in an urban area near Bishop Sulumeti Girls' High School where we also constructed a 50,000-liter water tank. The area is peaceful and conducive for learning. It is a very green place with maize farms and vegetables all around the school. There are some tall buildings here that are very good for businesses and rental apartments.
What we can do:
We will hold training for two days. Our 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.
"If The Water Project assists us with more water and sanitation facilities, hygiene in this school will improve," said Director Wesley Kibet.
The CTC club will oversee all 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.
There are only five latrine doors for each gender. That means there are more than 70 students per latrine door. The lines during class breaks are massive, and many of these students have to not only wait uncomfortably but arrive late to their next class.
We will construct two triple-door latrines. 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 our cement. Once finished, this tank can begin catching rainfall that will be used by the school’s students and staff.
Once finished, this tank can begin catching rainfall that will be used by the school’s 756 students and their teachers. While this many students may have access on any given day, realistically a single water source can only fully support a population of 350-500 people. This school would be a good candidate for a second project in the future so that adequate water is available. To learn more, click here.
We and the school strongly believe that with this assistance, standards will significantly improve. With clean water and high standards of cleanliness, students’ good health will give them the chance to earn better grades and live a better life.