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Location: Kenya

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 101 Served

Project Phase:  Installed

Functionality Status:  Functional

Community Profile & Stories

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 from Kenya (edited for clarity, as needed):

Welcome to the School

Every hour of the day at Bumuyange Secondary School has been planned out to maximize time. Students arrive at school by 6:45AM with water they’ve carried from home in jerrycans, then get straight to daily cleaning. Girls sweep classrooms and the office as boys collect litter around the compound. Classes begin at 7AM half of the week, while the other days begin with morning announcements.

Students have a 10 minute break midmorning for snacks and bathroom. Later when they break for lunch, students eat a mixture of maize and beans that is prepared and served at the primary school. Some students complain that having the same meal everyday is boring, but the school cannot afford any other kind of meal at the moment. Afternoon lessons stretch until 4PM when students break for various activities depending on the day of the week. Practice for games like football and netball are done every Monday and Wednesday, Christian Union is held every Tuesday, guidance and counseling is done on Thursdays, and every Friday evening is set aside for girls to mop all rooms in the school while boys slash (clear brush from) the compound.

Water Situation

Since the school doesn’t have its own water source, students are asked to carry water from home on a daily basis.

Teachers often release students early because going to the springs, streams and rivers is very dangerous for students, especially girls, who may be harassed sexually. This is why the school does not have evening study classes, yet they still have to compete with students from other schools that attend both morning and evening preps.

Those who fetch water from the stream and river submerge their jerrycans until they’re full. There are other students who make the trip to the protected spring in the area, which is the safest option. There are others who say they leave their buckets right under the water flowing from iron sheets or gutters at their homes. Another student, Annete, said her uncle has tapped water, so her family just borrows it on a daily basis.

But there’s no way for teachers to keep track of where water comes from each day. There was an outbreak of typhoid a little while ago, and it was attributed to the use of contaminated water. Even now, some students complain of diarrhea and have to seek treatment before resuming studies.

There is no water storage on school grounds, so water is kept in the students’ jerrycans until it is used. None of these containers have covers, so the water inside is open to contamination throughout the day.

Sanitation Situation

The secondary school has no latrines of its own. Instead, the primary section is lending two of its latrines to the older girls. They boys and teachers must share the rest of the latrines with the small students.

The primary students normally work with their teachers to clean the latrines every morning, but they are filthy from overuse by the end of the day. One of the students described that “the latrines are old with no shutters, therefore we have to struggle to hold the door as we ease ourselves.”

Lack of latrines has forced the school to make several adjustments; they already altered their schedule so that congestion at the primary school latrines would not be an overwhelming issue. When the secondary boys would rush to get to the primary latrines first, sometimes the younger boys would show up and demand to go first since the facilities are “theirs.”

Neither are there hand-washing stations for after using the latrine or before eating. Rubbish is thrown on the ground behind classes, and the wind blows it around.

Teacher Shunza said that sharing facilities like the kitchen and latrines with the primary school is a hard thing to do. “We do not love our state, especially old, worn out latrines, neither do we love seeing our children carry water from home. This has even driven other children from this area to go to better schools like Lusengeli, that is at least ahead of us in terms of water and sanitation facilities. We know that our school is at risk of another diarrheal disease outbreak, but we also understand the poor state of our underprivileged parents who either survive on meager daily wages they earn from hard work or from the small profits gotten from businesses. There are homes with no latrines, and I believe it is because of ignorance,” he said.

Plans: Hygiene and Sanitation Training and Hand-Washing Stations

Hygiene and sanitation conditions in this area are poor, and we with the school administration fear that only training the students will not instigate the change needed at home. Therefore, we plan to invite community members to join our hygiene and sanitation sessions.

Principal Enos Kagali said, “I’m happy you will train participants from the community on matters of health and hygiene. Most people live in poor health conditions, we sometimes have to go to homes of our children which are so dirty -which makes me wonder whether it will be easy to control diarrheal diseases if the fight is mounted on the part of the school alone. However much we try in school, the same children will get diseases from home.”

Training 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. This CTC club will oversee the new facilities, such as hand-washing stations, and make sure they are kept clean and in working condition.

These hand-washing stations are in the form of 50-liter buckets fitted with taps. These also have metal stands. Two of these stations will be delivered to the school, and the club will fill them with water on a daily basis and make sure there is always a cleaning agent such as soap or ash.

Plans: VIP Latrines

Two triple-door latrines will be constructed with local materials that the school will help gather. Three doors will be given to girls, while the other three will be given to the boys.

This school is already mobilizing for materials like sand, ballast, hardcore, old sugar sacks, and propping poles. Three male parents have already offered to do unskilled labor, and some female parents will fetch water for construction work. These parents accepted to do so after the principal decided to calculate payment for the work they do as school fees for their children.

Plans: Rainwater Catchment Tank

A 50,000-liter rainwater catchment tank will alleviate the water crisis at this school. The school will help gather the needed construction 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. Students will no longer have to leave their school in search of water!

We’re excited for this project to become a reality so that students and staff can focus on education. There will be an adequate source of clean water at Bumuyange Secondary School! We expect that academics will improve as students have more time to stay in class without worrying about water.

Recent Project Updates

05/04/2017: Bumuyange Secondary School Project Complete

Bumuyange Secondary School in Kenya now has a new source of safe, clean water thanks to your generous donation. A new rainwater catchment system has been built, and there are now six new latrines being used. Two hand-washing stations have been installed, and the entire student body has received training in sanitation and hygiene. Just imagine the difference these resources will make in the lives of these students!

You made it happen, now help keep the water flowing! Join our team of monthly donors and help us maintain this rainwater catchment tank and many other projects.

The report below from our partner gives the latest details of the project. We also just updated the project page with new pictures.

Project Result: New Knowledge

Hygiene and sanitation training was held in the Friends’ Quaker Church’s hall, which is situated next to the school. This is because there were no other free rooms to have such a meeting, since normal lessons were going on at the same time. The church hall was also spacious enough for activities like focus group discussions and demonstrations.

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The principal selected representatives of parents and teachers, as well as students to attend the training. Only a few student leaders were selected to represent the rest, because the organization did not want the normal activities and classes to stop because of the training. Invited participants are always expected to learn and then go and share with the entire school and community.

We taught an entire lesson on management and maintenance of the new tank and latrine facilities. Regular checking and cleaning of the gutter system is a must! It’s also important to treat the water while it is still in the tank. We also covered topics including but not limited to:

– Water pollution and water treatment

– Personal and environmental hygiene

– Group dynamics, leadership, and governance

– Forming an effective CTC (child to child) club

– Hand-washing

We used a number of different ways to teach the above topics, while demonstrations were used for hand-washing and tooth-brushing. We facilitated group discussions and presentations. The girls and boys also received handouts which will help them teach hygiene and sanitation to their peers.

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The child to child club will include both students and teachers who want to take responsibility for spreading the message of good health and hygiene among their peers. They will also be responsible for taking care of the new hand-washing stations, making sure they are always filled with water and that a cleaning agent like soap or ash is available. A water user committee has also been formed by parents and school administration, which will be responsible for overseeing and maintaining the new facilities.

14 kenya4643 WASH president addresses participants after elections

Parent Patrick Khanyanji was one of those invited to attend training. “We have suffered since inception of this school due to lack of water and latrines in the compound. You have brought us these facilities and as if that is not enough, you have come to teach us how to use them plus many important hygiene messages that we have learned today. Many people pay too much money to get such imperative knowledge in seminars but we are lucky to have got it free, isn’t this a miracle from above! Thank you, thank you, thank you,” he said.

17 kenya4643 Mr. Partrick Khanyanji

Project Result: Hand-Washing Stations

The two hand-washing stations were delivered to school and handed over to the CTC club. They will teach other students how to properly wash their hands at these stations, and will make sure there is always soap or ash available. Now the school has the stations they need, and they have the water to fill them! The CTC students even want to make their own hand-washing stations to give every student the opportunity to wash their hands.

Project Result: VIP Latrines

This project funded the installation of six new VIP (ventilated improved pit) latrines. These latrines are easy to use and easy to clean. And with a rainwater catchment tank, there should be enough water to keep them clean all the time!

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Project Result: Rainwater Catchment Tank

Construction on this 50,0000-liter tank began in the end of January.

Parents, staff, and students first helped our artisans gather everything needed for construction.

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The challenge completing this project was that the parents had faced so many broken promises in the past. A different organization had approached them earlier, promising a project, and then disappeared. The parents had even prepared for that project by gathering materials that would be needed for construction, and the sand and things eventually washed away with the rain. It was hard for us and the principal to convince parents that this time, it’s serious! The principal had to take three parents to Lusengeli Secondary School where a project was done in 2016, so as to see the latrines and water tank and also get assurance from the institution that we could be trusted. The parents then reported back to Bumuyange parents that the organization really is genuine, and everyone gained confidence and started supporting the project.

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Then, the location for the tank was decided on with the input of school leadership. We had to find a place that provided enough roof for a gutter system. We then cleared the ground, set and cast the foundational slab, built the five-inch-thick wall, built roofing, and installed the fittings such as delivery pipes, vent pipes, and screens. Finally, good drainage was ensured. Before the tank could begin collecting rainwater, we had it cure for two weeks. Once dry, we could remove the supportive beams and then install the gutter system. The school now has the opportunity to collect 50,000 liters of water!

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Local cobbler and parent Mudave Simon said, “Our children will hardly carry water from home because this tank is too big. I believe it will hold and store enough water to serve us even during the dry spell. Even if they carry water in case the tank dries it will just be for a short time. With this water in our compound, cleanliness will be kept paramount and diseases will be averted.”

The knowledge learned during hygiene and sanitation training was taken seriously. When we visited a few weeks later, the latrines were locked and properly cleaned. There was no bad odor even though they are being used by many students. The secret, as explained by the students, is that they pour ash down the pits to keep away the bad smell. The CTC club is already up and running with a membership of 28 students by the time the completion data was gathered. There are even plans to venture into a tree seedling project. The clubbers intend to purchase seeds, have a nursery bed and sell seedlings to sustain their water and sanitation facilities. Any need for repair work will be provided for by the proceeds from seedling sales.

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The school is experiencing new enrollment due to the availability of water and latrines within the compound. 22 new students have already transferred from other schools to Bumuyange; the highest spike in admission that they have witnessed since the beginning of this institution. It now brings their current population to 123: 47 boys, 67 girls, five male staffs and four female staff. “I know we shall have many students and that means we shall get more money from the government to do more projects,” the principal explained with hopefulness. “Our government gives 12,000 shillings for every student in high school. Therefore, the more children we have, the more money we will get and the more development we shall do here,” he went on to explain. “Bringing us this project has not just saved us time wasted on queues with primary school children or shame felt and time wasted when students go to bring water from various sources. No! It has opened more doors for us. Having 22 students admitted within a week is not a joke. Many more people have called me requesting to bring their children here next term and to me that is money that is coming and we shall use it to construct a laboratory even though it will take us a very long time!”

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01/27/2017: Bumuyange Secondary School Project Underway

We are excited to report that, thanks to your willingness to help, Bumuyange Secondary School in Kenya is building a source of safe, clean water for their students and staff. A rainwater catchment tank and new latrines are being constructed, hand-washing stations provided, and students and staff are being trained on proper sanitation and hygiene practices. Imagine the impact this will have on this school! Thank you for noticing the need here, and we’ll keep you posted as the work continues.

Click on the tabs above to learn more, and Thank You for your generosity that unlocks potential at Bumuyange Secondary School!

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Explore More of The Project

Project Photos

Monitoring Data

Project Type:  Rainwater Catchment
Location:  Vihiga, Shamakhokho, Bumuyange
ProjectID: 4643
Install Date:  05/04/2017

Monitoring Data
Water Point:
Last Visit: 09/02/2017

Visit History:
06/29/2017 — Functional
09/02/2017 — Functional


Project Sponsor - Imago Dei Community
1 individual donor(s)

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Country Details


Population: 39.8 Million
Lacking clean water: 43%
Below poverty line: 50%

Partner Profile

Western Water and Sanitation Forum (WEWASAFO) works together with less privileged and marginalized members of communities in Western Kenya to reduce poverty through harnessing and utilization of local resources for sustainable development.