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The Water Project: Sosio Polytechnic -
The Water Project: Sosio Polytechnic -
The Water Project: Sosio Polytechnic -
The Water Project: Sosio Polytechnic -
The Water Project: Sosio Polytechnic -
The Water Project: Sosio Polytechnic -
The Water Project: Sosio Polytechnic -

Project Status

Project Type:  Borehole Well and Solar Pump

Program: Wells for Schools - Kenya

Impact: 500 Served

Project Phase:  Canceled/Re-Allocated
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Project Features

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Community Profile

This information was provided by our partner IcFEM
Sosio Polytechnic – Kamukuywa 
The area known as Kamukuywa is found within Kimilili district, in the northern part of Bungoma county, Western Kenya. The area was was built on a settlement scheme after Kenya gained independence. Before independence, European settlers had moved into Kamukuwya forcing out the local population across the Kamukuywa river. After independence the land was divided and redistributed. The population of Kamukuywa is around 20,000 though still growing.
The main crops grown around Kamukuywa are potatoes, bananas and maize, though other crops are starting to be seen in fields as farmers diversify to new markets. Some farmers rear dairy animals and kuku’s (the Kiswahili word for chickens), which are then seen grazing around the household’s compound.
There are no large employers or industries in Kamukuya although there are many primary and secondary schools. The most notable local activity centres around the weekly market which takes place every Tuesday, when the Kamukuywa junction turns into a hive of activity as people travel from across the region to buy and / or sell livestock, fruit and vegetables, clothes, and household items.
The location of the borehole project, Sosio Polytechnic, is adjacent to one of the two vocational training centres in the Kamukuywa area. Practical skills are taught to students seeking training in masonry, bricklaying, tailoring, car mechanics and carpentry. It is a well known location close to one of the 3 key roads running through the Kamukuywa area, and sits in the centre of a specific area which has been recognised as having particular issues with a lack of water.  
Water was provided by the community in the form of a shallow well several years ago, but this was quickly contaminated and is not safe for use. Because of this, the members of the village (approximately 500 in total) have a choice of 3 springs located in different directions from which to draw water, the closest of which is over 2km away. These natural springs almost completely dry up during dry season resulting in long queues to share the scarce resources, and then during rainy season the springs are swamped by muddy water running off the slopes above the springs. Therefore the water, if available, is rarely clean and members of the community regularly suffer from diseases such as typhoid and diarrhoea as a result. 
Peter Koinange, a keen community activist living nearby the site, spoke with hope about the future for the community when clean water is provided. He is excited that in addition to the reduction in water-borne diseases, the project will also improve agricultural productivity by allowing more water to be used on the shamba (Kiswahili term for a domestic farm), and villagers will spend far less time walking long distances to collect water which may not even be clean. 
At least another 5 villages from around the site will be using this site as their primary source of water, and plans are already underway to develop microenterprises through which villagers around Sosio Polytechnic can take water to villages further away to ensure that they too can enjoy the benefits of clean water. 

Project Updates

10/05/2011: Project Update at Sosio Polytechnic

IcFEM have completed the community education, and report a great response from the community and a real improvement on the ground. Hygiene and sanitation has been a focus of this education, but IcFEM have also worked through ideas relating to water source management and sustainability. 

 When the hydrogeological survey was completed for this site, it indicated that the groundwater was significantly deeper than first anticipated, at around 200m. This is too deep for our contractor to drill, and the technology we use for pumping the water cannot pump from such a depth either. 

IcFEM are keen for us to explore other options that may be suitable for this site, including the option of choosing a different location nearby, or even developing a local spring instead of sourcing groundwater. 

This project has already had a big impact on the community – IcFEM have been really keen to stress how valuable the education program has been – and we hope to be able to find a solution to enable us to provide them with a clean water source. It is just about making sure that we promote technology that is appropriate to both the community and the natural conditions on the ground. 

We will update this page just as soon as we have agreement on the best way forward.

08/22/2011: Sosio Polytechnic Update

An update for the Sosio Polytechnic site in Kamukuywa:

Empowering Local Community Health Representatives

The partnership between The Water Project and IcFEM provided the opportunity for community health representatives from the villages surrounding Sosio Polytechnic to receive 3 days of training to empower them to deliver training to their peers about good practice in sanitation and hygiene. This will reduce the number of people who fall ill due to avoidable illnesses such as diarrheoa, which when complimented by the addition of the new borehole on the site will improve the health of people living in the nearby communities. 

When arriving for the 3 days of training at the local IcFEM office in Kamukuywa, each leader was given a copy of the Tear Fund manual – the PILLARS guide on ‘Encouraging Good Hygiene and Sanitation’ – on which the sessions were based. Each one is now tasked with passing on that knowledge to others living in their villages, to multiply the number of people benefitting from the work of the project.  

The Water Project : olympus-digital-camera-9 The Water Project : olympus-digital-camera-10 The Water Project : olympus-digital-camera-11

05/03/2011: Sosio Polytechnic - Update

This project is one of ten that form a ten project programme with IcFEM and Water For All. 

IcFEM (Interchristians Fellowships’ Evangelical Mission) are a large Christian development organisation based in Western Kenya, but with support from the UK. 
They will be looking after all the community outreach on this project – all the hygiene and sanitation promotion, community liaison and capacity building that goes into our work. IcFEM are already active within the community, and have well established relationships with community members and the local leadership. They can call upon a rich experience when it comes to community outreach, and we will be supporting them as they role out their program. 
Water For All are based in South Africa, and fund the development and provision of solar water systems. Once this borehole has been developed, Water For All will come in and install a solar powered pump, tower and tap at the site. 
In the coming days and weeks IcFEM will begin their community outreach. We will bring you updates on this as soon as we have them. 
We at The Water Project are really excited about this collaboration, and the impact it will have on people’s lives. 
Expect more as we get it! 

The Water Project : sdc14291-2

Project Photos

Project Type

Solar water systems use the power of the sun to drive a submersible electric pump and are ideal for boreholes with a high yield. The pumps Water For All uses - helical rotor pumps - are among the most efficient and simple pumps in the world with only one moving part. The system can pump water all day and excess water is stored in an overhead tank. Solar pumps are low maintenance, require no manual operation, and use clean, renewable energy.


1 individual donors
Southwest Chicago Christian School
Madison Patrick's Fundraising Page
Shada Bahu's Camas High School Senior Project