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The Water Project : 14-kenya4691-boy-seen-reading-next-to-school-dump
The Water Project : 13-kenya4691-student-latrines
The Water Project : 12-kenya4691-health-club-garden
The Water Project : 11-kenya4691-girls-help-the-cook-prepare-lunch
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The Water Project : 8-kenya4691-broken-plastic-tank
The Water Project : 7-kenya4691-boys-relaxing-on-the-rocks-outside
The Water Project : 6-kenya4691-mr-angaya-john-headteacher
The Water Project : 5-kenya4691-christine-is-excited-for-a-project
The Water Project : 4-kenya4691-alice-is-excited-for-water-on-campus
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The Water Project : 2-kenya4691-students-in-class
The Water Project : 1-kenya4691-students-posing-at-school-gate

Location: Kenya

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 500 Served

Project Phase:  Under Construction
Estimated Install Date:   (Explain This?)  03/15/2018

Functionality Status: 

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 (edited for clarity, as needed).

Welcome to the School

Shiyunzu Primary School is located in Shiyunzu Village of Kakamega, Kenya. It has a total enrollment of 712 students and employs 18 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.)

The school’s program starts very early in the morning at 6 am when pupils begin making their way to school. Reporting time is 6:30 am and any pupil who arrives past 7 am is punished by the teacher on duty. Cleaning of the school compound is done in the evening.

The livelihoods of the community members neighboring the school are quarrying, making bricks, and farming. There is a lot of potential for development if the community does everything they can to get and keep their kids in school.

Shiyunzu Primary is unique because it has a classroom and teacher dedicated to special needs children from the community. The teacher’s name is Madam Naomi Serenge, who is more of a mother, teacher, and friend than a social worker. This lady deals with these students just like they’re her own. What touches us most is that she takes care of a lot of other children by making visits to their homes. There are four boys who cannot walk to school, so this madam makes the effort to visit them at their respective homes and teach them life skills. It is encouraging to see how she loves her work and is committed to it.

Water Situation

There is no water source on school grounds, so administration has asked students to carry their own containers to school every day. Most students get their water from a protected spring, but that has been flowing very slowly. Because of this low water quantity, students have had to draw water from open sources like streams and puddles on the way to school. Since many of these students are still very young, they can’t carry more than 10 liters of water at a time.

The school doesn’t have much for storage, but they’ve been blessed to have recently received 50-liter Life Straw filters. Once delivered to school, students pour their water in these.

Students still do not understand the importance of drinking filtered water, especially when they fetch it from the open stream. Waterborne disease is still a common reason for students to be absent from school.

Sanitation Situation

There are nine usable pit latrines on school grounds. These are in pathetic condition, with large holes that put small students at risk. Many of these don’t even have doors, so students are forced to use the latrine in pairs; one stands in the doorway for privacy. Because of these bad conditions, open defecation is an issue as students look for any other private places to relieve themselves.

There are no hand-washing stations for students to use, but staff has one in their office. Headteacher John Angaya told us, “There is no day I have ever had 100% total attendance of the pupils since I came to this school. Many are absent because of stomachaches and this can be said due to poor hygiene.”

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: VIP Latrines

Two triple-door latrines will be constructed with local materials that the school will help gather. Three doors will serve the girls while the other three serve the boys. And with a new source of water on school grounds, students and staff should have enough to keep these new latrines clean.

Plans: Rainwater Catchment Tank

A 50,000-liter rainwater catchment tank will help alleviate the water crisis at this school. The school will also help gather the needed materials such as sand, rocks, and water from the spring for mixing cement (students have already started helping). Once finished, this tank can begin catching rainfall that will be used by the school’s students and staff. Students will no longer be responsible to find enough water to carry to school every day.

We and the school strongly believe that with this assistance, standards will significantly improve. These higher standards will translate to better academic performance!

Recent Project Updates

11/15/2017: Shiyunzu Primary School Project Underway

Shiyunzu Primary School in Kenya has begun building a new source of safe, clean water because of your generous donation. A rainwater catchment tank and new latrines are being constructed, hand-washing stations provided, and the school is being trained on proper sanitation and hygiene practices. Imagine the impact this will have on these students! Thank you for noticing the need here, and we’ll keep you posted as the work continues. But for now, please enjoy the new stories, pictures, and maps of this school.

Thank You for partnering with us to unlock the potential of these young students!

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Explore More of The Project

Project Photos

Project Data

Project Type:  Rainwater Catchment
Location:  Kakamega, Butsotso, Shiyunzu
ProjectID: 4691


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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.