Ebwiranyi Primary School Rainwater Harvesting and VIP Latrine Project

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Kenyan Rainwater Harvesting

Latitude 0.01
Longitude 34.57

500 Served

Project Status:

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Stories and 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).

Background Information

The Ebwiranyi primary school is located in Ebwiranyi Village, Mwitubwi sub-location, Southwest Bunyore location, Mwivona Ward, Emuhaya Constituency, Vihiga County.

The Church of God sponsored the school’s opening in 1952. The primary school has a total population of 728 pupils: 373 boys and 355 girls. There are also 67 early education pupils: 35 boys and 32 girls. This number includes four disabled students: one with physical disabilities and three with epilepsy. There are 13 TSC teachers and four PTA teachers. There is also a staff of three: one cook and two watchmen. 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.)


There is no safe water source within the school compound. Thus, students have to carry water from home to class every morning. The water they bring is not sufficient for an entire day, since water should be used for drinking, cleaning classrooms, and hand washing.

Students must then search for water during the school day, but the only available safe water source is one kilometer away. This walk is too far, so students often pull from contaminated sources around the school.

The contaminated water has resulted in water-borne illness outbreaks among students. The head teacher reports that those in the compound have already suffered from diarrhea, cholera, and typhoid.

The school sanitation situation is also in dire need of improvement. There are only seven VIP latrines that are used; three for the boys, three for the girls, and one shared among the teachers. All bathrooms are shared between students of both the primary school and secondary school. Since these 200 secondary school students do not have their own latrines, the primary school latrines are almost full and in poor condition.

Along with the shortage of latrines, there are no hand washing facilities present in either compound.

63 students have already suffered from Jiggers. This is a distracting and embarrassing condition that has caused decreased self-esteem especially among female students.

The head teacher is appealing to WEWASAFO or any other organization that can help. They want to provide clean and safe water before a major illness and disease-related catastrophe occurs.

A Community Project

Parents, school board members, local administration and WEWASAFO staff were included in mobilization.

Representatives were chosen to create both a community and school calendar to effectively plan the project. These representatives also mitigated tasks and mapped materials available to the community.

These materials were collected so that three spring protections and three water tanks could be constructed in Kakamega County. Materials include sand, ballast, hard core, bricks, and poles. Construction began on the fourth week of June, 2015.

Project Results:

Rainwater Harvesting Tank

Construction of the tank is complete and it is now in use. The area receives high rainfall throughout the year, giving the school a great opportunity to collect and store adequate water in their new tank. The water tank has made it easy for students to fetch water for drinking, cooking, and cleaning. Before the tank, students had to carry water to school with them, which was often inadequate. They then had to walk long distances in search of more. Pupils are now very happy that they no longer have to walk long distances for this necessity.

Access to safe drinking water has saved so much time for students. This additional time is used for study, and staff has already seen an improvement in academic performance. This makes the parents, teachers, and students very happy with the project’s results.

VIP Latrines

Two double-door VIP (ventilation improved pit) latrines have been constructed and are now in use. Two of the doors are for girls and the other two are for boys. Though the facilities are still not enough (especially for girls), the pupils are content with shorter lines.

Hand-Washing Facility

Two hand-washing facilities were delivered to and installed in the school compound. The pupils were trained on how to properly use these, and were assessed to ensure they wash their hands well. The two stations serve the entire school, and so you can imagine that the lines are extraordinary during class breaks. Thankfully, the Student Health Club has come up with an improvised solution of tippable tins filled with water that help alleviate the long lines.

Project Videos

Project Photos

Recent Project Updates

11/30/2015: Ebwiranyi Primary School Water Tank and Latrine Project Complete

We are very excited to report that, thanks to your willingness to help, the students and staff of Ebwiranyi Primary School in Kenya have a new source of safe, clean water. A new rainwater harvesting system and new latrines have been built. A handwashing station has been installed, and the students and community have received training in sanitation and hygiene. Just imagine the difference these resources will make in the lives of these students! We just updated the project page with the latest details including a video and lots of pictures of smiling young faces.

Take a look, and Thank You for helping us unlock potential!

The Water Project : kenya4441-20-finished-tank

09/30/2015: Ebwiranyi Primary School Project Underway!

We are pleased to announce that with your help, materials for a school rainwater harvesting tank and new latrines have been purchased. These facilities will provide clean water and opportunities for better hygiene; two improvements that will decrease physical stress and wasted time for students and staff.

The community has already begun construction. Please take time to browse the report posted above, which includes school information, GPS coordinates, and pictures.

Both the Emwiranyi school and The Water Project Thank You for joining in this journey of Progress and Promise. 

The Water Project : kenya4441-14-expectant

Monitoring Data

Project Type:  Rainwater Catchment
Location:  Kakamega, Kenya
ProjectID: 4441
Install Date:  09/18/2015

Monitoring Data
Water Point:
Last Visit: 01/31/2018

Visit History:
10/22/2015 — Functional
01/21/2016 — Functional
02/08/2016 — Functional
02/18/2016 — Functional
07/06/2016 — Functional
09/02/2016 — Functional
01/31/2017 — Functional
03/31/2017 — Functional
06/30/2017 — Needs Attention
01/31/2018 — Functional


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.