Project Status

Project Type:  Rainwater Catchment

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 459 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Nov 2017

Functionality Status:  Functional

Last Checkup: 04/02/2024

Project Features

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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

Ibinzo Secondary is an all-girls school. It was established in the year 2000, sponsored by the Church of God, Ingotse Mission. It is located in Ibinzo Village, Kenya. The school started with a total of 15 students, and is just for boarders.

Now, the school has a total population of 425 girls! There are 21 teachers employed at Ibinzo Secondary School, as well as 13 support staff. The school also undertakes a number of agricultural enterprises such as horticulture, dairy farming and agro-forestry. These activities help the school generate income to sustain its operations.

The girls wake up at 4:30 AM every morning to bathe and then attend study hall at 5:30 AM. They clean dormitories and classes from 6:30 AM until breakfast at 7. Morning classes begin at 7:45 AM until lunch at 12:25 PM. Afternoon classes start at 1:30 PM and end at 3:25 PM when girls are required to participate in one hour of games (like gym class). After games, the pupils wash up and prepare for evening study hall. The students end their day at 9:30 PM. Class is Monday through Saturday at this boarding school, and on Sunday morning the pupils attend  a religious service in the dining hall.

Water Situation

Ibinzo Secondary has two plastic tanks of 10,000 liters and 15,000 liters. This total capacity of 25,000 liters is not nearly enough for hundreds of boarding girls in their teenage years. Students have to wait long hours for their turn to fetch water from the tap on existing plastic tanks, which interferes with study time. Not to mention the fact that these tanks depend on rainwater; when full of rain, they can only last a few rationed days. Normally by the morning after rains, the water is consumed, leaving students with no water during the day.

In this case, girls are sent out to the local market to fetch water from a well there. This well also serves the girls during the drier months once the tanks are used up. When carrying water across this distance, there are several opportunities for contamination. Even if it was clean when pumped from the well, it is likely that after the dusty journey and storage at the school, the water is contaminated once consumed.

After drinking this water, girls complain of stomachaches and diarrhea. Cases of typhoid are even reported.

Sanitation Situation

The principal of the school, Mrs. Esther Abel said that "the toilets are almost full and something needs to be done urgently to safeguard the health of the girls. The water tanks are not sufficient for the entire student community, teachers and staff at the school. I welcome assistance."

The school has a total of 14 latrines out of which two are for teachers and visitors and the other 12 are for students. These latrines are not enough compared to student population, resulting in pupils wasting a lot of time in lines during break.

Due to the water shortage, a good number of these latrines aren't cleaned, and thus aren't used. Some of these latrines are almost full and pose a health hazard. The doors to some are even broken off.

There is only one hand-washing facility on school grounds, located outside of the classroom compound.

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 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. 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.

Plans: VIP Latrines

Two triple-door latrines will be constructed, providing six new latrines. 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!

When a 50,000-liter rainwater catchment tank, latrines, and hand-washing facilities are installed here, it is expected that students will have sufficient time to concentrate on their studies. Supplementing the available rainwater with this huge capacity should even take the girls through dry spells. And with enough clean water, the girls' academic performance will improve. Ultimately, the school will begin producing healthy and successful graduates!

Project Updates

October, 2018: A Year Later: Ibinzo Secondary School

A year ago, your generous donation enabled us to construct a rainwater catchment tank for Ibinzo Secondary School in Kenya. The contributions of incredible monthly donors and others giving directly to The Water Promise allow our local teams to visit project sites throughout the year, strengthening relationships with communities and evaluating the water project over time. These consistent visits allow us to learn vital lessons and hear amazing stories. Read more...

November, 2017: Clean Water at Ibinzo Girls Secondary School

We're so excited to share pictures and good news from Ibinzo Girls School: Clean water is now flowing from the tank. The girls are still excited about their hand-washing stations, too! Check out the updated project page for new pictures, and Thank You again for your generosity that unlocks potential.

October, 2017: Ibinzo Girls Secondary School Tank Complete

Ibinzo Girls Secondary School in Kenya now has a new rainwater catchment tank, latrines, and hand-washing stations thanks to your generous donation.  Student leaders have also received training in sanitation and hygiene and formed a club to promote what they learned. Just imagine the difference these resources will make in the lives of these girls!

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. We look forward to reaching out again after the tank has caught its first rains and received treatment to provide clean water.

Project Result: New Knowledge

We worked with Principal Esther Abel to organize hygiene and sanitation training. She selected students leaders from forms one and two, along with teachers to help support our officers in training the girls. Not only that, but the teachers learned some new things for themselves.

There were 17 participants, comprised of the two teachers and 15 students. All of these girls listed respectfully, participated eagerly, and asked appropriate questions about each topic.

1 kenya4669 training

Staff and students meet in the dining hall for hygiene and sanitation training.

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

Demonstrations were used for hand-washing, tooth-brushing, solar disinfection, and many other topics. We facilitated group discussions and presentations, and students took part in role-plays. The girls had received new notebooks and pencils at the beginning of training which gave them an opportunity to keep good notes. They will be responsible for sharing all of this great information with their peers at school and families back home!

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A staff member helps a student wash her hands by pouring the water.

The CTC 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 managing hand-washing stations, cleaning latrines, and keeping the school environment tidy. A water user committee has also been formed by parents and school administration, which will be responsible for overseeing and maintaining the new facilities.

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Learning about how to best manage and maintain the water tank so it will last for years.

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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Training participants line up to see the inside of their new latrines.

Project Result: Hand-Washing Stations

The two hand-washing stations were delivered to school and handed over to the CTC club. These have been placed outside of the girls’ latrines to encourage hand-washing after latrine use. CTC club members 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!

22 kenya4669 hand-washing

Project Result: Rainwater Catchment Tank

Construction for this 50,000-liter rainwater catchment tank was successful!

Parents, staff, and students helped our artisans gather everything needed for construction. All the while, women cooked meals for the artisans, and the school provided accommodations for the artisans during their work.

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Parents help unload construction materials from the truck.

The process began with our staff and school administration exploring the compound to try and determine the best location for a new rainwater catchment tank. This needed to be the best site with good, clean roofing to catch the rainwater.

Rainwater tank construction began with clearance of the site: excavating the soil within the required measurements to make level ground for the tank foundation. The foundation was cast by laying hardcore on a level ground and then reinforcing it using steel, concrete and waterproof cement.

As the foundation was being lain, both the drawing pipe as well as the washout pipe were affixed. The wall was built with ferro-cement techniques through six layers. The inner wall was plastered while rough casting was done on the outer part.

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One of the many layers comprising the tank wall. Also, the artisan says hi!

After the superstructure had been given enough time to settle, the dome construction followed. The manhole cover was fitted, inlet pipes were connected to the roof gutters, inlet screens, ventilation pipes (breathers) and overflow pipes were all done to standards.

16 kenya4669 artisan making gutters

Gutters are handmade because each catchment system is different.

Finally, the catchment area was dug, plastered, and a staircase installed. Drainage was set up there, and then the tank was allowed three to four weeks to undergo complete curing before it was cleaned and handed over to Ibinzo Girls Secondary School. Now, it's ready and waiting for rains to come and fill it! When this tank fills up, the girls will have enough water to last them weeks through dry spells.

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The tank is complete and waiting for rain.

Principal Abel was telling us about how her girls were constantly asking her "Madam Principal, when shall we ever have our own reliable and clean water?" They were constantly faced with the challenge of having to find enough water for their daily needs. Principal Abel didn't know how or when this would happen, and is so grateful that this project will not only solve the issue of water scarcity, but provided the girls with enough latrines too. "No longer will I hear these questions from the girls," said Principal Abel.

Project Photos

Project Type

For a rainwater collection system, we build gutters around a building with good, clean roofing to channel rain where we want it. From there, the water falls through a filtered inlet pipe into a high-capacity storage tank, the size of which is based on population and average rainfall patterns. In the tank, water can be stored for months, where it is easily treated and accessed. Learn more here!

A Year Later: Ibinzo Secondary School

October, 2018

The girls at the school are happy with their reliable tank of water, especially because it is located near their dorms, providing convenient access to water throughout the day.

Keeping The Water Promise

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

This giving community supports ongoing sustainability programs that help Ibinzo Girls 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!

A year ago, your generous donation enabled us to construct a rainwater catchment tank for Ibinzo Secondary School in Kenya. The contributions of incredible monthly donors and others giving directly to The Water Promise allow our local teams to visit project sites throughout the year, strengthening relationships with communities and evaluating the water project over time. These consistent visits allow us to learn vital lessons and hear amazing stories – and we’re excited to share this one from local team member Mary Afandi with you.

After the construction of the water tank, the students got access to safe, clean water for drinking and washing. In addition, the water tank was constructed near the dormitories and washrooms, making it very convenient to draw for various uses. Access to water has saved the time that was previously wasted looking for water.

"We are happy because the water tank was constructed near the dormitories and the water has been connected to the washrooms, making it much easier to access the water," 16-year-old student Marureen Lumula said to us.

Maureen Lumula fetches water

Construction of the tank is only one step along the journey toward sustainable access to clean water. The Water Project is committed to consistent monitoring of each water source. Our monitoring and evaluation program, made possible by donors like you, allows us to maintain our relationships with communities by visiting up to 4 times each year to ensure that the water points are safe and reliable.

This is just one of the many ways that we monitor projects and communicate with you. Additionally, you can always check the functionality status and our project map to see how all of our water points are performing, based on our consistent monitoring data.

One project is just a drop in the bucket towards ending the global water crisis, but the ripple effects of this project are truly astounding. This tank at Ibinzo Secondary School is changing many lives.

"After the construction of the water tank, a lot of water is harvested from roof catchment, making it readily and conveniently available for the girls. This saves students’ time and allows them to concentrate on their academic work," School Principal Esther Abel said.

Maureen Lumula and Principal Esther Abel

This is only possible because of the web of support and trust built between The Water Project, our local teams, the community, and you. We are excited to stay in touch with this community and support their journey with safe water.

Read more about The Water Promise 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 Ibinzo Girls 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 Ibinzo Girls 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.


Nandansons Charitable Foundation
Mount Pleasant Lutheran Church
The Grammar Junior School, Nicosia, Cyprus
Apna United Social Club
Bjorkdale School
WW Brownie Troop 3954
Heywood Avenue School
Peter Skene Ogden Secondary Amnesty Club
5 individual donor(s)