However, we estimate a well can comfortably support 500 people, so more work needs to be done to ensure this region of nearly 1,500 people can access safe water. That is why we work together with the same group for five years to build sustainable water and sanitation solutions.
The majority of people living in this area practice small-scale agriculture to feed their families and make a small profit in the market. Locals grow maize, peas, green grams and are recently involved in the cultivation of fruit trees such as mangoes and oranges.
The average day starts at 6am. Children prepare for school with the help of their parents and after that livestock are either taken out or tethered in the bush for grazing. After that, the husband and wife are free to engage in the main income generating activities; farming, casual labor, etc.
The water system installed last year is properly taken care of, for the community members quickly saw its importance. The sand dam and well are easing the water challenges in the area with a substantial number of people able to access water easily.
It's for this reason that community members remain committed to implementing more projects in their area to continue easing water access. The construction of more water projects will help in making water easily accessible to everyone.
"Working on water projects is helping solve the water challenges in our area which has for long suffered continuous water problems, by coming together and working on more projects we will help bring water close to everyone in Kivani Village," Mr. Gedion Mutie said.
What we plan to do about it:
Our main entry point into Kivani Community has been the Itatini Self-Help Group, which is comprised of 37 farming households that are working together to address water and food scarcity in their region. These members will be our hands and feet in both constructing water projects and spreading the message of good hygiene and sanitation to everyone.
We’re going to continue training Kivani Community on hygiene and sanitation practices. Though our visits to households were encouraging, we want to ensure that community members are practicing the day to day habits we’re not able to observe. Food hygiene, water hygiene and treatment, personal hygiene and handwashing will all be a focus during our next review.
Building this sand dam at a spot further down the river will bring water closer to hundreds of other people. After the community picked the spot, our technical team went in and proved the viability by finding a good foundation of bedrock. Now, our engineers are busy drawing up the blueprints. We estimate the dam will be 49 meters long and 2.8 meters high.
We are unified with this community to address the water shortage. As more sand dams are built, the environment will continue to transform. As the sand dams mature and build up more sand, the water tables will rise. Along with these sand dams, hand-dug wells (check out the hand-dug well being installed next to this dam) will be installed to give locals a good, safe way to access that water.
With these projects, clean water will be brought closer to hundreds living around Kivani, including Mrs. Makau and her family.
This project is a part of our shared program with Africa Sand Dam Foundation. Our team is pleased to provide the reports for this project (edited for readability) thanks to the hard work of our friends in Kenya.