Project Status

Project Type:  Rainwater Catchment

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 225 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Apr 2019

Functionality Status:  Functional

Last Checkup: 05/04/2024

Project Features

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Musango Secondary School was established in the year 2014 with an enrollment of 44 students. It started under the leadership of the primary school headteacher, Mr. Olacho. The school bought land in 2013 but continued to operate within the primary section until 2015 when it transferred to its own land. Four classrooms, six latrines and a semi-permanent kitchen were constructed. The school has grown to currently have 225 students.

But there has never been enough water on school grounds. "Water scarcity is one of the many challenges we face in this school," said Deputy Principal Stephen Makokha.

"At some point we have to get our students out of the classes for them to fetch water, yet lessons are going on. It wastes their time and ours too making it so hard to complete our syllabus on time."

When students need more water, they have to walk out the gate, down the road, and into the adjacent community. They frequent the community's well, where disputes often arise as community members say that they have the right to always be first in line. With two plastic tanks that don't provide adequate water, the school is in danger of being closed by the local health department.

What we can do:


The school environment is fairly clean. The utensils are sun-dried on the dish rack. However, the students need to learn more about personal hygiene and how important handwashing is.

"Our hygiene is not the standard. Our students can't clean their classes and the latrines frequently as required. They don't even wash their hands after visiting the latrine simply because we don't have enough water in school and also there are no handwashing containers," said Mrs. Kisanya Mitchell.

Training on good hygiene habits 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.

After visiting with teachers and students, we determined to address personal hygiene; leadership and management; handwashing; water handling; water treatment.

Handwashing Stations

Both the teachers' and students' latrines do not have water placed near them for handwashing. The only available handwashing container is at the entrance of the administration block for the teachers to wash their hands.

Two handwashing stations will be delivered to the school, and the CTC 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

There are just two latrines per gender. The latrines are not so clean. They are not washed daily because of water scarcity.

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!

Project Updates

May, 2019: Musango Mixed Secondary School Project Complete

There is a new rainwater catchment system at Musango Mixed Secondary School! Students have a 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 received training in sanitation and hygiene.

Rainwater Catchment Tank

Construction of this new rainwater catchment tank was a big success.

"Finally, I don't have to go to the community borehole to get water for usage in school!" exclaimed 19-year-old Kevin.

"I just pray that the rains come soon before we come back from our break so that I can find water in the tank."

They did!

The Process:

Our staff and the school administration started by looking around the school to determine the best location for their new rainwater catchment tank. This needed to be the best site with good, clean roofing to catch the rainwater.

Upon decision of the construction site, the top earth layer is excavated and cleared. Stones are then carefully packed onto the excavated area to create a strong foundation.

The foundation is cast with sand, cement, ballast, and waterproof cement. As this is being done, the wall's skeleton of wire mesh and rebar is erected and secured into the foundation. Upon completion of the foundation, the walls are cemented and plastered to completion both inside and outside.

The catchment area is dug, plastered, and a staircase installed so students can easily get water from the tap. A metal cover with a lock is placed over the catchment area to avoid water wastage.

A concrete reinforcement pillar is built up to support the dome, which is also made of a strong wire mesh and concrete. A hatch is installed in the dome to allow the tank to be cleaned out before heavy rain, and the gutter system is also installed at this time.

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

The only challenge throughout all of the construction was that the artisan arrived on time but the school wasn't quite prepared for him. The parents had donated sand and stones from their land and the school was in charge of transporting those materials to the construction site. However, the truck was late and the artisan had to sit around and wait all day until those particular materials arrived.

Parents also helped a lot by delivering the water we needed to mix cement

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.

The students were overwhelmed with the availability of two handwashing containers just for them since the teachers previously kept the only handwashing station for themselves. They can't believe that they have the chance to wash their hands after visiting the latrines and at any other time.

VIP Latrines

This project funded the installation of six new ventilated improved pit latrines, three for the boys and three for the girls. 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.

New Knowledge

We worked closely with the school board chairwoman to plan hygiene and sanitation training. A teacher was then tasked to select student representatives from each grade. The students in attendance formed a child to child (CTC) health club that will share what they learned with their peers and families at home.

The sun was hot, so we settled under the shade of trees at the edge of school property. The weather was nice in the shade where we could enjoy a cool breeze.

Participants received new notebooks and pens to jot down important health information they learned from Trainer Lillian

At first, the participants were nervous about training and thought it would be similar to their normal lesson lectures that bring reprimand when one answers incorrectly. After assuring them that this would be a participatory class and there is no punishment for trying, the students became free and relaxed - making it fun for everyone.

The students needed knowledge on how to improve standards of hygiene and ensure that the sanitation facilities given to them are well-maintained for years to come. Some of the topics we covered included:

- water pollution and treatment methods
- handwashing
- dental hygiene

Students learned that a family doesn't always have to afford toothpaste. Charcoal can be crushed and used for toothpaste too.

- operations and maintenance of the facilities

Students learned that they can cut down on latrine odor by pouring a little ash down the pit at the end of the day.

- group dynamics along with leadership and governance for the newly formed CTC health club

"Personally, I have learned a lot today and I will make sure when we reopen that fellow students get this information since I am now a member of the CTC club. My family back at home will also be happy to hear of this new information, especially on handwashing which we have always done the wrong way," said 18-year-old Cynthia.

Thank You for making all of this possible!

March, 2019: Musango Mixed Secondary School Project Underway

A severe clean water shortage at Musango Mixed Secondary School drains students’ time, energy, and health. Thanks to your generosity, we’re working to build a clean water point and much more.

Get to know this 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 Udpate: Musango Mixed Secondary School

February, 2021

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

Keeping The Water Promise

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

This giving community supports ongoing sustainability programs that help Musango Mixed 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!

"We used to get water from a borehole which serves many people and so the congestion experienced made us waste a lot of time, thus affecting our studies."

"My life has been impacted positively with the water point."

"Looking at my studies, I have greatly improved for the time we used to waste queueing for water has been converted to studies."

"Looking at the former class of candidates, they really had a good time during their agriculture practicals. In the dry season, they used water in the tank to irrigate their plants which helped them score highly. Indeed, if the tank had not been there, then these students would have failed."

"I also look forward to achieving my goal of having a better grade. This will be achieved because the evening time we used to go get water will be used for my revision."

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 Musango Mixed 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 Musango Mixed 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.


Project Sponsor - The Patyrak Family