The existing water tanks at Kiundwani Secondary School are not sufficient for the more than 500 students who attend. Some of the school water tanks are faulty and cannot entirely be depended on by the school.
The rainwater harvested in the water tanks usually runs out after two and a half weeks because they are too small. Water is delivered to school via truck, but this lasts even less time and is too expensive to keep on purchasing. Furthermore, the water acquired by the school from the water trucks is dangerous since the water source is not certain.
The school has a challenge in establishing standard educational facilities since most of their funds are channeled to sourcing water. Although the school has managed to retain a clean, conducive environment for learning, it still remains a problem for them to acquire water because some parents do not pay school fees on time, so the school's funds deplete and they are left with no alternative but to get the water on debt.
Due to the insufficient water, the students have no handwashing culture. This exposes them to high risks of contracting diseases such as cholera, diarrhea, and amoeba.
"At times there are cases of stomachache and diarrhea because we rarely wash our hands after visiting the toilets," said Dominica Mwania, a student at the school.
Nicholas Munyo is a boarding student at the school. He told us that he goes a week without bathing at multiple points during the year and does not wash his clothes often due to the lack of water at the school.
"We try to emphasize cleanliness, but it is not easy to implement due to the lack of water," he said.
Here’s what we’re going to do about it:
Rainwater Catchment Tank
We will build a 104,000-liter rainwater catchment tank for this school. This water will benefit the students, teachers, and supplementary staff. Parents will mobilize the materials needed for construction, such as sand and stone. They will also lend some strong arms to help with the actual construction.
The huge capacity of this tank makes the others look tiny in comparison; 104,000 liters should be enough water to carry students and staff through the entire dry season. As soon as the tank has time to cure, it can begin to collect rainwater for drinking, cooking, and cleaning!
Students and staff will be trained for one day. Those in attendance will form a school health club that will promote good hygiene and sanitation practices both at school and home. They will learn all of the steps to proper handwashing, how to treat water, and how to keep their environment clean. The school will also be taught how to best oversee and maintain their new rainwater catchment tank and handwashing stations.
Three handwashing stations will be delivered at the project’s completion. These are 1,000-liter plastic tanks fitted with four taps. The health club and school management will be responsible for making sure tanks are filled with water and that a cleaning agent such as soap or ash is available.