Project Status

Project Type:  Rainwater Catchment

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 500 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Jan 2020

Functionality Status:  Functional

Last Checkup: 05/10/2024

Project Features

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Nang'anda Primary School is located in a remote, rural region of Kakamega County. The place is very green for most of the community members do crop farming and sugarcane planting. There are many trees planted all over, making the area cool and peaceful.

The school opened in 1952 by community members who wanted to see their children have a nearby education opportunity. It has since grown to have 587 students taught by 18 teachers and staff. They study English, Kiswahili, mathematics, social studies, science, religion, drawing, and reading.

A normal day begins very early in the morning as students wake up to prepare for the day. A class six student who was interviewed narrated that for her, she wakes up at 5 am so that she can get to school on time. She walks for 40 minutes on average to get to school. Students walk to school in a group because it's still dark out at that time of morning. Friendships are built during the walk to school. On arrival at school around 6 am, the pupils go to class for morning study hall. They take a break for cleaning chores like collecting litter, cleaning the toilets, and ensuring the handwashing facilities have water. The pupils must also fetch water before regular lessons start at 8 am.

Ensuring there's enough water is a risky task for students. It requires a strong individual and the water needs to be drawn with lots of care. They get water from an open well on school grounds, where a container is tied to a rope and lowered down through the hatch. Pulling the full container back up is hard work.

This dug well dries up when it doesn't rain for a long time, so students have to leave school in search of more water during parts of the year. They most often walk to an unprotected spring in the community, which is about one kilometer away.

The pupils struggle with the community members who also need to get water from their spring. The water is dirty, for it is open and the pupils just dunk their containers under the surface to get water. To cut down on long trips into the community, students are also asked to carry a container of water from home to school each morning.

The school does not have a storage facility for their water. Instead, they depend on the small containers that the pupils bring from home. The containers do not have covers and the storage is very little. This forces the pupils to get water throughout the day so as to ensure all the activities which need water are carried out - including drinking.

There are various negative consequences of safe water scarcity here. The school records a high number of absent pupils every week as they suffer from stomachaches and diarrhea caused by dirty water. Illness due to unsafe water and lack of sanitation creates health costs that claim a large portion of a poor household's income. Academic performance here also declines as time is wasted in search of water is much.

"The scarcity of clean water has been a challenge since the time I joined this school about five years ago now," reflected Deputy Headteacher Tembu.

"Many pupils are absent on a weekly basis and on inquiry, they are having stomachaches. Most of the pupils have poor health starting with their personal hygiene for when you look at the skin it tells you they do not have care. The scarcity of safe water at large in school reduces our learners concentration, performance, and score."

What we can do:


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.

Handwashing Stations

There are currently two handwashing stations, but these are not enough for 623 students.

Two more 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

The sanitation at the school is very bad. The ratio at which the pupils use the latrines is one latrine to 75. There are such long lines when students have to use the bathroom!

"We are so much disadvantaged, especially we the girls. We normally congest ourselves at the toilets and people urinate on the floor. Most of my fellow pupils do not have shoes and this makes it unhealthy for them to step in urine. Our early childhood pupils do not have a toilet and so they just do defecate outside the toilet. Our environmental hygiene needs change," said 14-year-old Sharon.

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 and is a great solution because of the high rainfall in the area. The school will help gather the needed materials such as sand, rocks, and water for mixing cement. We will deliver the hardware, lumber, guttering, cement, and expertise needed to get the job done.

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

January, 2020: Nanganda Primary School Project Complete!

Nanganda Primary School in Kenya now has access to a new source of safe, clean water thanks to the completion of their rain tank, which has the ability to collect 50,000 liters of water. We installed new latrines for students, handwashing stations, and we trained students and staff on improved sanitation and hygiene practices. All of these components work together to unlock the opportunity for these students to live better, healthier lives.

Pupils pose with their new rain tank

Rain Tank

Construction for this 50,000-liter rain tank was successful!

Parents, staff, and students helped our artisans gather everything needed for construction. All the while, the school cooks prepared meals for the artisans, and the school provided accommodations for the artisans during their work. Local women and men 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 rain tank. This needed to be the best site with good, clean roofing to catch the rainwater.

Excavating the rain tank site

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 hardcore on 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 laid. The wall was built with ferro-cement techniques through 6 layers. The inner wall was plastered while rough casting was done on the outer part. Finally, the catchment area was dug, plastered, and a staircase installed.

Artisans cementing the walls from inside the rain tank

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. The project was well implemented without any challenges experienced.

Artisan works on the dome

Once finished, the tank was given 3 to 4 weeks to undergo complete curing before it was cleaned and handed over to Nanganda Primary School, though we will continue to offer them unmatchable support as a part of our monitoring and maintenance program.

Happy student stands with a fresh drink from the rain tank

"We are very happy as a school for this new water point," said teacher Mrs. Dinah Ramadhan.

"As a teacher, I used to feel bad and I had low morale coming to teach in the morning because I would not get the pupils in my class since they were busy out fetching water from the spring. This used to leave our learning targets unmet due to most class time being spent at the spring. But, we want to appreciate and thank God for you because of the great support you have given us. This will indeed not only help us improve not only our health but also our academics and so we are grateful."

Student enjoying water from the rain tank

Field Officer Jemmimah Khasoha, the lead officer for this project, remarked that "it was great working with the school."

"Even when the artisans were requesting a change in the quality of materials being collected, the school did not hesitate in availing them. This gave the artisans ample time in working together and building strong relationships with the school, which means that even when monitoring will be done in the subsequent months to come, there will be no difficulty," she continued.

"Great appreciation goes to the Almighty Father in heaven for the provision of good health to everyone concerned with this project and the provision of finances which made work easy. To the rest of the team, the good relationships built and the coordination of work was marvelous and so we appreciate their great work. The pupils of Nanganda Primary school from now henceforth will have clean, safe, and sufficient water for use."

VIP Latrines

This project funded the installation of 6 new ventilated improved pit (VIP) latrines, half for girls and half for boys.

Girls pose with their new latrines

All of these new latrines have cement floors that are designed to be easy to use and clean. And with a rain tank right on school property, there should be enough water to keep them clean.

Boys celebrate their new latrines

Handwashing Stations

The 2 handwashing stations were delivered to the school and handed over to the student health club. These were placed outside of the girls’ and boys’ latrines to encourage handwashing after latrine use.

Health club members teach other students how to properly wash their hands at the stations, make sure the stations are filled with water and work to ensure that there is always soap or ash available.

Students show off their clean hands after using the handwashing station

New Knowledge

Hygiene and sanitation training was scheduled with the help of the school principal and the Head Teacher Mr. David Wamalwa, who together helped ensure that the training date would be convenient for students, staff, and parent representatives. Individual teachers helped by selecting students from each class to represent the others.

21 students attended training, which was conducted outside the classrooms under a mango tree since it was a normal school day and all of the inside spaces were full. Though the weather was pleasantly sunny and dry the whole day, the setting was a bit disruptive since it is near the main road. Noises from passing people on the roads and the construction of the facilities were present. Despite this, however, the pupils did their best to stay active and attentive. Since there were several local languages spoken among the students who attended, we translated the entire session as we went to ensure everyone understood each topic fully.

Field Officer Jemmimah Khasoha facilitates training

We covered a number of topics, including personal hygiene such as bathing, oral hygiene, and handwashing with soap as a barrier from germs; and operation and maintenance of the new facilities, with each person understanding their role for long-lasting clean water and good health. The new student health club will be greatly involved in project management and will be responsible for encouraging good health and hygiene practices amongst their peers, teachers, and the larger community.

Jemmimah leads handwashing practice

While discussing the importance and proper 10 steps of handwashing, one pupil said she never knew that something like handwashing could have a procedure. For her, the main thing was ensuring water had passed over her hands, she explained. But by the end of the session, she said she understood that it is for her own good and the health of others that she should be keen to wash her hands with all 10 steps since learning that hands are one of the easiest transmitters of diseases.

Student Lydia holds up a sign that announced her winning the election for Treasurer of the student health club

During the leadership and governance session, the pupils learned the roles of each leadership position they would elect for their student health club. We also discussed the qualities and characteristics of a good leader and when a leader is needed. What made this topic special is the fact that the pupils took it so seriously so that when the time came to elect their own leaders, it was a competition.

When Facilitator Jemmimah Khasoha asked each student running why they were so active and needed the position, the children answered that leaders are respected and honored. One student, Stanley, who was chosen to be Chair of the group said he wanted to gain courage and develop his skills in leadership because in the future he wanted to be a leader in the community and be elected Governor. This made this topic very special and important for this young boy who had already visualized who he wants to be and how to get there.

Student Alisters elected Secretary of the student health club

"This training helped me to view life from a different perspective," Stanley said.

"I have realized that people and the environment that one comes from can affect your personality and you can change how that environment looks and thus how it affects you...I had heard of things like handwashing and I knew washing hands was something important but I was not aware of how easy it is to do all of the steps. Therefore I see this training as one of the treasures I have gotten to experience since the year started," he finished.

Thank you for making all of this possible!

December, 2019: Nanganda Primary School Project Underway!

A severe clean water shortage at Nanganda 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 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!


Project Underwriter - H2O for Life
Nice, Drain and Potrykus Family
Gyan's 13th Bday Campaign for Water
Gyan's 13th Bday Campaign for Water
6 individual donor(s)