Project Status

Project Type:  Rainwater Catchment

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 500 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - May 2019

Functionality Status:  Functional

Last Checkup: 06/09/2024

Project Features

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Community Profile

Ichinga Muslim Primary School does not have a source of water on school grounds. Students must leave class to get water from the community where they share a well. The school administration also requires that students carry water each morning and during lunch break to minimize class disruptions.

It's a lot of work to fill the containers at the community well. The India Mark pump on the well is functional but the yield is low, and students have to pump for a long time. By the time they return to class they are worn out from pumping and carrying water.

"Inadequate clean water makes us students fall sick every time, forcing us to stay away from school to seek medication, which affects our academic performance," said 13-year-old Abdul.

Ichinga Muslim Primary School started in 1998 for 50 early education students. They were soon supported by the Mumias County Council which built four classrooms for the school. The parents provided desks and paid the teachers. Since then, the school has students in every grade with a population of 1,072 pupils - all who would greatly benefit from a source of clean water on school grounds.

What we can do:


One thing they are doing right is that they have handwashing facilities, but they are too far away from the latrines. The biggest area for needed improvement is with latrine hygiene. They really need to be cleaned twice a day using the available disinfectants. The school has no dish rack and students put their plates inside their desks where they also put their books.

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.

VIP Latrines

"Our toilets are dirty in most afternoons because we only clean them in the morning. They are always smelling too bad in that when you get out of them you carry the smell away with you for some time," said 13-year-old Amisa.

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.

Handwashing Stations

We will deliver two handwashing stations 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.

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.

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: Ichinga Primary School Project Complete

There is a new rainwater catchment system at Ichinga Primary School! 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.

Before this tank, the school had absolutely no water available on school grounds.

The headteacher said that there was a deputy headteacher who had been posted to work in this school, but took off after two days because of the severe conditions caused by lack of water. He went on to say that there was also a breakout of typhoid among the teachers who were unable to carry out their teaching for some time as they underwent treatment. On top of all of that, the headteacher said he was losing a big number of students every term to other schools because parents looked at his school as unsafe for their children.

"I think you will learn that if there is a place you really helped, it is here," shared Headteacher Omar Keya.

"This project has really been a blessing to this school because I had received a notice of closure from the public health sector because of inadequate latrines and I had really tried to apply for LifeStraw containers (filters) without success because I had no reliable water source," he continued.

"But now I am happy the school will not be closed because of the additional latrines and that I now have the LifeStraw containers, which were delivered yesterday after they realized that the school was going to have a permanent and reliable water source. They agreed to give us LifeStraw filters after I produced the memorandum of understanding that was signed by you and myself to construct the water tank. I am so grateful!"

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 the 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. That's especially important here at Ichinga Primary School because they have an early education class. The little ones love playing with water!

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 Ichinga Primary School, though we will continue to offer them great support as a part of our monitoring and maintenance program.

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, three latrine doors for the boys and three latrine doors 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 planned hygiene and sanitation training through the headteacher and the health teacher, requesting they tell us a day and time that will not interfere with the regular school program. The headteacher communicated the selected day and when we arrived, we found the trainees already assembled in a room together with their health teacher. We asked that at least five students from grades four, five, and six attend to represent their peers. 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.

Students received new notebooks and pens to record what they learned during training

We taught students 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 ways to treat water for drinking

The facilitator taught the trainees to take care of water sources by keeping away potential pollutants. She warned them to be mindful of the cups and containers they use to fetch and store their water. If these aren't clean, they can also contaminate the water they plan to drink.

– handwashing

– dental hygiene

– personal and environmental hygiene

– group dynamics along with leadership and governance for the newly formed CTC health club and water committee
– operations and maintenance of the facilities

"The training is really going to improve our health and the sanitation in school and in our families as well. This is because the many things we have been doing, we have been doing wrong unknowingly. We have been corrected and so we will ensure we follow the instructions and teach others too. This will reduce the infections of waterborne diseases and other diseases caused by the dirty environment," said 14-year-old Daniel.

Thank You for making all of this possible!

April, 2019: Ichinga Primary School Project Underway

A severe clean water shortage at Ichinga Primary 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 news of success!

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: Ichinga Muslim Primary School

February, 2021

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

Keeping The Water Promise

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

This giving community supports ongoing sustainability programs that help Ichinga Muslim 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!

"We used to come with water from our homes for cooking, washing classes, latrine use, and for drinking as well."

"We would also go outside the school to look for water from unprotected wells and springs which was really wasting our learning time."

"We can now access water easily from the rain harvesting water tank that The Water Project constructed for us. This has helped us to spend more time learning, hence most of us are improving in our performance."

"This water point has helped me to improve in my studies because the time I used to go looking for water I now use to study."

Amisa and her teacher Mr. Keya Abdallah Omar pose 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 Ichinga Muslim 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 Ichinga Muslim 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.