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
Ebwambwa Secondary School was started by the Ebwambwa Baptist Church. The church met this need when they realized children had to walk to the neighboring Mwiyala Village for school. Ebwambwa Secondary School is located next to Ebwambwa Primary School: 1.5 km from Kakamega-Webuye road in Ebwambwa Village, Sichirayi sub-location, Shieywe location of Lurambi Constituency within Kakamega County.
Ebwambwa Secondary School has a total of 252 students, of which 103 are boys and 149 are girls. The school employs 14 teachers and five supplementary staff.
A normal day in Ebwambwa Community begins when the mothers and daughters wake up to fetch water. The first thing they do with the water is brew tea for the rest of the family. Then, the remaining water is used for domestic chores like cleaning. Children of school-going age are prepared to leave; bathed, dressed and fed. The man of the house leaves to work on the family farm. When a woman is finished with her household chores, she will join her husband on the farm.
At the end of last year, Ebwambwa Primary School received a water project resulting in a rainwater catchment tank and new latrines. The secondary school does not yet have its own water source, and so students often run over and fetch water from their neighbor. There is also a stream nearby, so if the rainwater catchment tank is too busy with primary students, secondary students will fetch water from this alternative.
Using the alternative source is a sacrifice for these older students. The stream is unprotected and open to contamination from surface runoff, human and animal activity, nearby farming and latrines, and open defecation. The impact is huge; secondary students are often absent because they ail from common waterborne diseases like typhoid, cholera, and dysentery. A lot of time which would have been spent to improve the academic performance of students is instead wasted on numerous trips to the spring in search of water.
Once in a while, a suffering student never makes it back to school. Ebwambwa Secondary School is in great need of their own source of safe water.
There are seven usable pit latrines, but they are not clean. Without enough drinking water, students cannot be expected to maintain a high level of sanitation and hygiene.
There is only one hand-washing station available for students. When the headmistress heard that a project was being implemented in the neighboring primary section, she immediately sent in her own application for help. She explained the dire need of her students in the areas of sanitation and water, and after our assessment, we agreed to this water project. Our initial visit to the school established that the school sanitation levels need to be addressed, since it only has two latrine doors for boys, three doors for girls, and two for teachers and staff.
Project Plans: Hygiene and Sanitation Training
Teachers, students, and three members of the school management board will be present for two days of training sessions. This training is meant to equip participants with the skills needed to practice good hygiene, and to promote these practices among peers and the greater community. The end goal is to eliminate water and hygiene-related diseases!
The facilitator plans to use PHAST (Participatory Hygiene and Sanitation Training), CTC (child to child), discussions, lectures, and demonstrations to teach topics including but not limited to disease transmission, hand-washing, and water treatment. The CTC method will prepare students to lead other students into healthy habits, as well as kickstart a CTC club for the school.
Project Plans: Rainwater Catchment Tank
A 30,000-liter rainwater catchment tank will be built on Ebwambwa Secondary School's grounds, so that students no longer have to borrow from the primary children, or even worse, travel to the unprotected spring. Local parents and school administration will work together with our construction teams, and will also ensure that all local materials are available at the work site. These materials include sand, ballast, hard core, sugar sacks... and food fuel for our artisans!
Project Plans: VIP Latrines
Two triple-door VIP (ventilated improved pit) latrines will be constructed, three doors for each gender. Once students have their own water source, they will have the ability to keep their new latrines clean.
Project Plans: Hand-Washing Stations
Two 60-liter containers with stands will be delivered to the secondary school. This will give students and staff a total of three usable hand-washing stations. The CTC club will be responsible for filling these stations and making sure they remain clean.
The entire Ebwambwa Secondary School fraternity is appealing to the donor to consider their situation and assist them by constructing a proper rainwater catchment tank and VIP toilets. They believe that with these facilities, health will improve significantly, and this will translate to better performance amongst students. Better performance will provide greater opportunity!