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The Water Project: Matsakha C Community -  Shelter Made Of Iron Sheets
The Water Project: Matsakha C Community -  Household
The Water Project: Matsakha C Community -  Nearby Vegetable Garden
The Water Project: Matsakha C Community -  Maurine Carrying Water
The Water Project: Matsakha C Community -  Carrying Water
The Water Project: Matsakha C Community -  Fetching Water
The Water Project: Matsakha C Community -  Fasilia Hassan Fetching Water
The Water Project: Matsakha C Community -  Current Water Source

Project Status

Project Type:  Protected Spring

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 500 Served

Project Phase:  Under Construction
Estimated Install Date (?):  08/31/2018

Project Features

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Community Profile

It’s in the wee hours of the morning when you can spot Maurine and other women balancing their yellow water containers as they rush to the spring.

They have to go early to beat the others to the spring. The water becomes murky as people dunk their containers under the surface for collection. Any water fetched later in the day can’t be used for drinking or cooking due to the problem.

As they brave the morning chill, they traverse neighbor’s sugarcane plantations to make the first of several trips that will be needed throughout the day.

Maurine and these other women are among hundreds of people in Matsakha who rely on dirty water to meet all of their needs. (Editor’s Note: While 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.)


A huge portion of Matsakha population depends on Mbakaya Spring, a source dirtied by nearby farming, people, animals, and other types of waste. The community built a short wooden dock to help keep people from slipping on the mud around the spring. The water is always a cloudy color but just gets worse as the day goes on.

People need to fetch water on a daily basis because it can’t be stored for long. Women report that water’s smelly after storing it for just one evening. That’s indicative something else is going on with this water, and it’s proven by the fact Matsakha people are constantly fighting waterborne diseases.


Most latrines in the community are made of mud walls and floors. These latrines get particularly dirty and dangerous during the rainy season, since they’re not waterproofed at all. Women report that it’s not easy to clean their latrines, having to deal with the mud during the rainy season and the dust during the dry season. What’s worse, more than half of households are even missing this kind of facility.

There are even fewer sanitation tools like dish racks, clotheslines, and hand-washing stations.

“It would be much better to have toilets here, along with clean, safe water. Children would suffer from diarrhea a lot less,” Mrs. Maurine Wakoli admitted.

Here’s what we’re going to do about it:


Community members will attend hygiene and sanitation training for at least two days. This training will ensure participants have the knowledge they need about healthy practices and their importance. The facilitator plans to use PHAST (Participatory Hygiene and Sanitation Transformation), CLTS (Community-Led Total Sanitation), ABCD (Asset-Based Community Development), group discussions, handouts, and demonstrations at the spring. One of the most important topics we plan to cover is the handling, storage, and treatment of water. Having a clean water source will be extremely helpful, but it is useless if water gets contaminated by the time it’s consumed. Handwashing will also be a big topic.

Training will also result in the formation of a committee that will oversee operations and maintenance at the spring. They will enforce proper behavior around the spring and delegate tasks that will help preserve the site, such as building a fence and digging proper drainage. The fence will keep out destructive animals, and the drainage will keep the area’s mosquito population at a minimum.

Sanitation Platforms

On the final day of training, participants will select five families that should benefit from new latrine floors.

Spring Protection

Protecting the spring will ensure that the water is safe, adequate and secure. Construction will keep surface runoff and other contaminants out of the water. With the community’s high involvement in the process, there should be a good sense of responsibility and ownership for the new clean water source.

Fetching water is predominantly a female role, done by both women and young girls. Protecting the spring and offering training and support will therefore help empower the female members of the community by giving them more time and efforts to engage and invest in income-generating activities.

This project is a part of our shared program with Western Water And Sanitation Forum (WEWASAFO). Our team is pleased to provide the reports for this project (formatted and edited for readability) thanks to the hard work of our friends in Kenya.

Project Updates

05/16/2018: Matsakha C Community Project Underway

Dirty water from Mbakaya Spring is making people in Matsakha C Community sick. Thanks to your generosity, we’re working to install a clean water point and much more.

Get to know your community through the narrative 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 : 3-kenya18123-fetching-water

Project Videos

Project Photos

Project Type

Protected Spring

In many communities, natural springs exist as water flows from cracks in rocky ground or the side of a hill.  Springs provide reliable water but that doesn’t mean safe. When left open they become contaminated by surface contamination, animal and human waste and rain runoff. The solution is to protect the source. First, you excavate around the exact source area of the spring. Then, you build a protective reservoir for water flow, which leads to a concrete spring box and collection area. Safe water typically flows year-round and there is very limited ongoing maintenance needed!