Project Status

Project Type:  Rainwater Catchment

Regional Program: Southeastern Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 187 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Mar 2018

Functionality Status:  Functional

Last Checkup: 05/24/2024

Project Features

Click icons to learn about each feature.

Community Profile

This project is a part of our shared program with Africa Sand Dam Foundation. Our team is pleased to directly share the below report (edited for clarity, as needed).

Welcome to the School

Kivani Primary School was started in 1996 to serve the children of Kivani Village of Machakos County, Kenya.

The school enjoys a close relationship with Sindano wa Wia Self-Help Group which has been working with ASDF since 2015. Members are parents of children attending the school and are aware of the water scarcity there.

It is for this reason that they proposed and are committed to constructing a water tank at the school to help alleviate the suffering that their children go through. Their affiliation to Sindano wa Wia SHG and the alarming water access challenges that the pupils go through are major reasons why this school is a prime candidate for a water project.

Water Situation

Pupils carry water to school from their homes on a daily basis - every child carries five liters of water. With a total of more than 160 liters of water needed for drinking, cooking and washing classes and toilets each day, the water situation at the school is critical.

The existing storage tank is only a 10,000 liters, which can last only two months after the rainy season.

Thus, pupils are sent back out throughout the day to find water. They most often go to an earth dam located one kilometer from school during afternoon breaks. Parents also bring water to school when the situation is the worst. The school also depends on vendors who bring water to sell at a cost of 30 shillings per 20-liter jerrycan from River Thwake - 10 kilometers away.

Water delivered to the school is poured in the plastic tank.

After drinking this water, there is rampant waterborne diseases like amoeba, typhoid, bilharzia, and ringworm. Not to mention all of the extra time that was wasted fetching that dirty water!

"I always get very tired, and by the time I get home it's late and I can’t read my books. I just sleep." Muthini would like to be a doctor in the future, but she says that she lacks enough study time. As she spends more time on water, she may not achieve her dreams. She continued, "I fear I may not get the good grades that one is supposed to get to further in becoming a doctor. Lot of time we waste on water issue."

Sanitation Situation

The current sanitation situation is not bad. There are nine pit latrines at school, all in fairly good condition. There are no hand-washing stations, though.

Plans: Hygiene and Sanitation Training

Students and staff will be trained for one day. Those in attendance will form a school health club that will promote good hygiene and sanitation practices both at school and home. They will learn all of the steps to proper hand-washing, how to treat water, and how to keep their environment clean. The school will also be taught how to best oversee and maintain their new rainwater catchment tank and hand-washing stations.

Plans: Hand-Washing Stations

Three hand-washing stations will be delivered at the project’s completion. These are 1,000-liter plastic tanks fitted with four taps. The health club and school management will be responsible for making sure tanks are filled with water and that a cleaning agent such as soap or ash is available.

Plans: Rainwater Catchment Tank

We will build a 104,000-liter rainwater catchment tank for this school. This water will benefit the students, teachers, and supplementary staff. Parents will mobilize the materials needed for construction, such as sand and stone. They will also lend some strong arms to help with the actual construction.

The huge capacity of this tank makes the others look tiny in comparison; 104,000 liters should be enough water to carry students through the entire dry season. As soon as the tank has time to cure, it can begin to collect rainwater for drinking, cooking, and cleaning!

Project Updates

March, 2018: Kivani Primary School Project Complete

Kivani Primary School in Kenya now has a new source of safe, clean water thanks to your support: A new rainwater catchment system has been built. Hand-washing stations were installed, and students and staff have received training in sanitation and hygiene.

Project Result: New Knowledge

The field manager works with the officers and principal to plan the best time and place for hygiene and sanitation training. This planning is done well in advance to make sure the students and teachers don’t miss any class time. Every single student and teacher ended up meeting our trainers outsider under the shade of a tree, since there wasn't enough room for everybody inside. They managed to pull enough desks and chairs out of classrooms for everyone to be seated.

We took the first minutes to get to know each other and establish expectations for training. Open discussion about what the children observe at school and at home directed our trainer in what she'd address. Our goals were to:

- Demonstrate the relationship between sanitation and health

- Encourage students to manage their water and sanitation facilities

- Help students improve hygiene behavior/practices

- Enhance students' capacity to manage diarrheal diseases

Students volunteering to hold up illustrations of good and bad hygiene practices.

The trainer led sessions on proper food handling, preparation, and storage. Similar sessions on water were even more important, teaching how to safely fetch, carry, store, and treat water. We also covered topics including:

– Importance of using a pit latrine

– Prevention of diarrhea

– Proper handling of food and water

– Hand-washing

– Flies and other spreaders of germs

– Personal hygiene (washing face and brushing teeth)

Students particularly enjoyed the demonstrations, role plays, and group discussions.

The trainer demonstrating how to wash your hands.

By the last day of training, a student health club was established to carry out the following objectives:

– Teaching other students about hygiene and sanitation

– Ensuring the latrines and school compound are always clean

– Ensuring that students always wash their hands with clean water and soap after visiting the latrine, and ensuring these hand-washing stations have clean water and cleaning agents at all times

17-year-old Stephen Mumo said, "We have learned a lot in today's training. We have learned how to wash our hands and maintain hygiene, learn about good hygiene, good use of latrines, among many other things. We have also learned different methods of water treatment."

Project Result: Hand-Washing Stations

Large, multi-tap hand-washing stations have been delivered to the school and placed outside of the latrines. The student health club has already filled these up with water so they can be used.

Project Result: Rainwater Catchment Tank

Kivani Primary School is affiliated with the Sindano Wa Wia Women's Self-Help Group, since most of its members’ children attend here. These parents and school administration approached the self-help group committee and requested their help in alleviating the water shortage at the school. A meeting with all of the parents and the headteacher was then held to plan out the project. Parents agreed to collect construction materials like sand, rocks, and water. They also worked hard alongside our artisans.

Women helping prepare concrete for tank construction.

Construction for this 104,000-liter rainwater catchment tank is much like the construction of a concrete house. First, the ground is leveled for foundation excavation. Alternating layers of impermeable rocks are laid upon mortar up to seven feet high, with internal and external diameters of 25 and 28 feet respectively.

A reinforced concrete column is built right up the center of the tank, which holds up the roof and prevents it from caving in. The walls are then plastered both internally and externally with waterproof cement. After that, several feet of guttering is installed and channeled into the tank.

Once the tank has cured (dried) sufficiently, it can begin to collect rainwater. We met students at the tank as soon as construction was completed, and then again when we heard the tank had received a good amount of water. There were smiles all around the group as we witnessed clean water come from the tap for the first time. Stephen Mumo said, "We used to carry five liters of water every day on our way to school, but now we will no longer carry water. Water for drinking and cooking will be available! We will also plant trees to beautify our school."

November, 2017: Kivani Primary School Project Underway

Kivani Primary School in Kenya will soon have a new source of safe, clean water thanks to your donation. A rainwater catchment tank is being built, hand-washing stations are being 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.

Thank You for your generosity that is unlocking potential for students in Kenya!

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!


Data Abstract Solutions, Inc.
On Behlaf of my Uncle Late Mohammed Jaffar and Nazeema Jaffar
Churchdown Village Junior School
Our Saviour's Lutheran Church - Vacation Bible School
Mikayla G's Bake Sale
In Memory of Makka Ahmed
Filip and Vanda (Year 6, Knightsbridge School, Montenegro)
45 individual donor(s)