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The Water Project: Kyetonye Community -  In The Kitchen
The Water Project: Kyetonye Community -  In The Kitchen
The Water Project: Kyetonye Community -  In The Kitchen
The Water Project: Kyetonye Community -  Clothesline
The Water Project: Kyetonye Community -  Mutiso Household
The Water Project: Kyetonye Community -  Latrine
The Water Project: Kyetonye Community -  Latrine
The Water Project: Kyetonye Community -  Mutiso Household
The Water Project: Kyetonye Community -  Mutiso Household
The Water Project: Kyetonye Community -  Water Containers
The Water Project: Kyetonye Community -  Ezekiel Mutiso
The Water Project: Kyetonye Community -  Ivuka Shg Member Ezekiel Mutiso
The Water Project: Kyetonye Community -  Shg Members Carrying Water Home

Project Status

Project Type:  Sand Dam

Regional Program: Southeastern Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 500 Served

Project Phase:  Under Construction
Estimated Install Date (?):  02/15/2019

Project Features

Click icons to learn about each feature.

This is our second year working with the Ivuka Self-Help Group. It was formed in January 2016 with the objective of developing and enhancing the social welfare of 25 members who come from Ivumbu, Kasioni, Kaani and other communities.

We installed a dug well and hand pump alongside a sand dam to help households in the Kaani area access safe water last year.

However, we estimate a well can comfortably support 500 people, so more work needs to be done to ensure this community of more than 5,000 people can access safe water. That is why we work together with the community for five years to build sustainable water and sanitation solutions.

An elderly woman in the community, Mrs. Magdalene Mwende, told us how exhausting it is for her to make the journey to Kaani to fetch water. She finds the trip back home with heavy water jerrycans to be the worst part. She said it is fine for young people because they are energetic.

That leads her and others who can’t make the journey to use other nearby water sources. Though the water is easier to collect, it is unsafe. These open sources harbor waterborne diseases that cause the people who drink from it to fall ill.

“The distance to go and fetch water is far since it is too steep for someone my age. At times we get typhoid, bilharzia or even amoeba because of drinking the water that is nearer,” Mrs. Mwende said to us.

“My nephew has been diagnosed with amoeba many times. We do not have the techniques to treat this water.”

This is a rural area that is partly vegetative while some other areas are dry. It is a peaceful area with buildings made of brick stones while others are built of iron sheets. The majority of households rely on farming as their main income.

Some people report engaging in informal labor. They are often hired by the hour to perform tasks like working on farms. A few people own small businesses or are formally employed in the region.

The average day starts with the sunrise around 6am. The women usually go fetch water for washing and to prepare breakfast before the children go to school. The men often take the livestock out for grazing. During the day, the woman washes the family’s clothes, tidy up the house, washes utensils and prepares lunch as well as supper for the family. However, in this community, the parents are aged leaving the children to do most of the tasks.

Poverty is a major problem in the community. We collected reports from families struggling to produce enough food so that everyone can eat three meals a day. Constructing a sand dam and a well in Kyetonye will help both improve access to safe water for people like Mrs. Mwende, and make it easier for farmers like Mr. Mutiso (pictures included) to irrigate their crops.

What we plan to do about it:

Our main entry point into Kyetonye Community has been the Ivuka Self-Help Group, which is comprised of 39 farming households that are working together to address water and food scarcity in their region. These members will be our hands in feet in both constructing water projects and spreading the message of good hygiene and sanitation to everyone.


We’re going to continue training the self-help group members and their communities 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.

Sand Dam

Building this sand dam at a spot further down the river in Kyetonye 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 31 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 people like Mrs. Mwende.

Project Updates

01/02/2019: Kyetonye Community Sand Dam Project Underway

A severe clean water shortage in Kyetonye Community still affects hundreds of people. Thanks to your generosity, we’re working to install a water point nearby and much more.

Get to know this community through the introduction and pictures we’ve posted, and read about this water, sanitation and hygiene project. We look forward to reaching out with more good news!

The Water Project : 1-kenya18185-shg-members-carrying-water-home

Project Photos

Project Type

Sand Dam

Seasonal streams (and the sand they carry) are trapped by dams, replenishing the water table and allowing for adjacent hand-dug wells. Almost completely led by community-supplied sweat and materials, and under the supervision of engineers, dams are strategically placed within those dry river-beds. The next time it rains, flood-waters are trapped.

With a sand dam, this trapped sand begins to hold millions of gallons of rainwater. Soon enough, sand reaches the top of the dam, allowing water to continue downstream – where it meets the next dam. The result? A regional water table is restored.


Field of Green Grass Solutions, Inc.
The Singh / Aggarwal / Nath Family
incuda GmbH
Blue Diamond Denim
Sean Delaney
Max Ben & Lars Rauch
131 individual donor(s)