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
Kalenda Primary School was started in 1974 by the Catholic Church. The school is located in Kalenda Village, Samitsi sub-location, Shrug location, Kakamega North Sub-County within Kakamega County. The school now has a total population of 628 pupils. The school employs 13 teachers and three support staff. (Editor's Note: While this many people may have access on any given day, realistically a single water source can only support a population of 350-500 people. This community would be a good candidate for a second project in the future so adequate water is available. To learn more, click here.)
A normal day at Kalenda Primary begins at 6AM as pupils begin reporting to school. Lower grades are responsible for cleaning the compound from 7AM to 7:25AM. On Mondays and Fridays, there is parade during which the Kenyan flag is raised. The master on duty addresses the pupils and invites other teachers to make their announcements. On Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, lessons begin at 8AM and end at 4:30PM. Pupils are required to stay for games until they are dismissed to return home.
There is no water source at Kalenda Primary School.
Students are thus sent out with jerrycans to fetch water from a protected spring. Though the water from this source is safe, it is over two kilometers away. If students go all the way to the spring, they must walk along a busy road to the edge of the community. Because of this long walk, it is likely that students search for alternative sources to fill their containers, such as unprotected wells or surface waters. Numerous cases of water-related diseases have been reported after drinking water, even when it is fetched from the protected spring. Students who fetch that water struggle to keep it safe from contamination on the long trip back to the school.
There is a functional well within walking distance, but it is across the busy road. Teachers will not risk sending their small students to such a location. Plus, the well is primarily used by about 500 community members, all who take precedent over students who come from across the street.
The school reports numerous absences due to waterborne disease outbreaks among students. Illnesses include typhoid, amoeba and diarrhea-diseases.
The school has a six latrines for boys, all of which lack doors for privacy. Doors or not, these six latrines are far too little for the 283 boys who attend classes here.
Girls attending this school have no latrines at all, and have to cross a busy road to use the latrines at the secondary section. Since they go on class break at the same time as secondary girls, they must line up and wait for the secondary students to use the latrines first. All latrines observed during our initial visit to the schools were smelly and falling apart.
Headteacher Noah Musotsi said, "The situation in our community, and especially the school, has always been wanting since the sanitation facilities are not enough. Pupils waste a lot of time queuing so as to use the facilities. We thank you so much for your concern."
Plans: Hygiene and Sanitation Training and Hand-Washing Stations
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 kick start 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. The two hand-washing 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: Rainwater Catchment Tank
A 50,000-liter rainwater catchment tank will be constructed on school grounds. Teachers, students, and parents will gather the materials needed for this project, including sand, ballast, bricks, and hardcore. This contribution will fuel a sense of responsibility for the school and community to take care of their new facilities. Once materials are mobilized, the WEWASAFO team will arrive to lead the construction effort.
With adequate clean water, the school will have water for drinking, cooking, cleaning, and hand-washing. Students will no longer be sent over two kilometers away to fetch water!
Plans: VIP Latrines
Two triple-door latrines will be constructed, providing three new latrines for each gender. Latrine materials will be mobilized the same way as the tank, ensuring the school feels these facilities are truly theirs. And with a rainwater catchment tank nearby, there will be enough water to keep them clean.
School administration and parents are positive that with these new facilities and training, their students’ academic performance will improve. Students will be healthy and empowered to focus on what’s important!