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The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -
The Water Project: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School -

Project Status



Project Type:  Rainwater Catchment

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 244 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Jul 2016

Functionality Status:  Functional

Last Checkup: 05/17/2019

Project Features


Click icons to learn about each feature.



Community Profile

This project is a part of our shared program with Western Water And Sanitation Forum (WEWASAFO). Our team is pleased to directly share the below report (edited for clarity, as needed).

Welcome to the School

Friends School Mukhonje Secondary is a mixed day school and boarding school, sponsored by a local church. The day scholars report to school in the morning at 6:30am and return home at 5:30pm. The boarders wake up at 5:30am and prepare for class. At 6am the boarders have their morning tea. All the students start morning exercises at 6:40am, and normal lessons start at 8:00am. The students will then have three lessons before break. After break, the students attend two lessons and are then dismissed for lunch. All students have a common lunch in the school dining hall. After lunch break, they have two more lessons and then are free for games. After games, the day scholars go back home while the boarders wait for supper to be served at 6pm. After supper, the boarders do evening exercises from 7pm to 9:30pm.

Since the school was established in 1976, enrollment has been fairly stable. But as of late, enrollment has decreased from 450 students to only 215. This is due to poor management and inadequate water and facilities.

Water Situation

Over the course of the day, when there is no electricity, students are sent to fetch water from a stream located 800 meters away from school. On average the students make at least two water trips for both personal and school use. It is evident that the stream’s water is contaminated; farming takes place extremely near the water point, so fertilizers and pesticides are often washed into the stream’s water. Most local women also wash their clothes directly in the running water, and motor-bikers often rinse their bikes in this same water.

The students’ schedules depend on electricity because there is a borehole on campus, but its not an ordinary borehole. The underground water is pumped up into a small plastic tank using electricity.

Either way, students and teachers alike often report waterborne disease after drinking this water.

Sanitation Situation

The school used to have a total of 15 VIP latrines, but now only seven are in use. Of this total, two are for female teachers, two for male teachers, and the remaining three for boys. The other eight latrines were closed by Kakamega County Public Health Department, which visited the school earlier this year. This team gave the school a three-month notice sharing that closure of the school is imminent if it does not improve sanitation conditions.

Most of the girls in this school have dropped out altogether, while others have opted to look for other schools with better facilities. “The rate of girls dropping out of school is very alarming. We are really saddened by the turn of events. We urgently need support so that we can retain our girls in school. I want to spearhead change in the school!” Madam Marina faces all of these challenges only two months into her new role as school principal.

“I have run around looking for emergency assistance that will help solve the situation before time elapse,” says school principal Madam Marina. Girls are forced to share the two latrines set aside for female teachers because all of their latrines were among the eight closed by the health team. “The coming of this project to our school is a miracle from heaven. Our school was about to be closed but because of the support from The Water Project, we will have water and good VIP latrines and our school will stay open. More girls will be encouraged to attend school,” rejoices Madam Marina.

Plans: Hygiene and Sanitation Training

Teachers, students, and members of the school board will be trained for two days on hygiene and sanitation practices. The training facilitator plans to use PHAST (Participatory Hygiene and Sanitation Transformation), CTC (Child-to-Child), group discussions, handouts, role-plays, and demonstrations. CTC will be invaluable as they encourage child leaders’ critical role in leading and promoting positive change in their communities.  This training will also result in the formation of a CTC club that will be charged with overseeing and maintaining the sanitation facilities on campus.

Plans: Construction

Constructing a rainwater catchment tank will help the school store enough water so that when the electrical power is off, students can still access clean, safe drinking water. Construction of VIP latrines will save the school from closure and will also give girls dignity, encouraging them to attend and remain in school. The tank should also catch enough water to fill the two hand-washing stations being delivered to the school.

Project Updates


12/15/2017: A Year Later: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School

A year ago, generous donors helped build a rainwater harvesting tank and latrines for the Friends Mukhonje Secondary School in Western Kenya. Because of these gifts and support from our monthly donors, partners are able to visit project sites throughout the year, strengthening relationships with communities and evaluating the actual water project. These consistent visits allow us to learn vital lessons and hear amazing stories – we’re excited to share this one from our WEWASAFO partner, Jonathan Mutai, with you.


The Water Project : 4610_yar_1


Project Photos


Project Type

Rainwater Catchment

Rainwater is collected off strategic areas of a roof, enters a custom guttering system (which filters out debris) and leads to a storage tank. Tanks can vary in sizes and are determined by population and average rainfall patterns. Water can be stored for months, is easily treated in the tank, and is accessible through taps. These projects are implemented at schools with proper roof lines and gutter systems to make them successful.


A Year Later: Friends Mukhonje Secondary School

November, 2017

“As you enter the school compound, you are welcomed by a very neat and clean compound, well trimmed grass and flowers. A closer observation of the latrines and classrooms is a clear indication that cleanliness in the school is done regularly due to availability of water in the school.”

Keeping The Water Promise

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

This giving community supports ongoing sustainability programs that help Friends Mukhonje 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!

Give Monthly

A year ago, generous donors helped build a rainwater harvesting tank and latrines for the Friends Mukhonje Secondary School in Western Kenya. Because of these gifts and support from our monthly donors, partners are able to visit project sites throughout the year, strengthening relationships with communities and evaluating the actual water project. These consistent visits allow us to learn vital lessons and hear amazing stories – we’re excited to share this one from our WEWASAFO partner, Jonathan Mutai, with you.

From the clean classrooms, to the flourishing gardens, to the vibrant and healthy students, Friends Mukhonje Secondary School bears the marks of an excellent project that requires the hard work of students, staff, parents, and the expertise for implementation provided by WEWASAFO.  Mrs. Marina Mulama, the school principal, recognizes the impact that improved sanitation and hygiene facilities has had on gender imbalance and the quality of work she is seeing in the school.  She reports, “The biggest change in this institution is that the population of girls which had gone down due to inadequate facilities before, is now improved. Also cases of waterborne diseases have drastically reduced as a result of project implementation, students are now accessing clean and safe water for drinking as well as for regular cleanliness of classrooms and toilets. Besides that, good performance in the school is another great change realized.”  These improvements give the school notoriety within the area and attract even more students.

The students also testify to the opportunities that emerge when they are not spending hours of the school day accessing water.  Ian Balongo, age 18, shares, “Now am accessing safe clean water for drinking at any time I need within the school compound. The time that I wasted earlier before the project was implemented has been important to me now. I have maximized it in studies which has resulted in improved performance in class.”

The ongoing survival of many schools in Kenya are threatened if they are not able to provide water and sanitary facilities for the schools, yet it is difficult for parents to pay these expenses in addition to usual school fees.  The Water Project and WEWASAFO have targeted schools just like this because of the potential that can be unlocked for both students and staff when clean water and sanitation is available.

We know that the positive changes at Friends Mukhonje Secondary School from clean water access and healthy lifestyle changes will have ripples of impact throughout their school, their community, and in the surrounding areas.  We are excited to stay in touch with this school and to report the news as they continue on their journey with clean water.

The Water Project and our partners are committed to consistent monitoring of each water source. Our monitoring and evaluation program, made possible by monthly donors, allows us to visit communities up to 4 times a year. Read more about our program and how you can help.


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 Friends Mukhonje 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 Friends Mukhonje 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!

Give Monthly