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The Water Project: Luyeshe Community, Matolo Spring -  Clothes Drying
The Water Project: Luyeshe Community, Matolo Spring -  A Latrine
The Water Project: Luyeshe Community, Matolo Spring -  Drinking Water Storage
The Water Project: Luyeshe Community, Matolo Spring -  Materials Already Waiting At The Spring
The Water Project: Luyeshe Community, Matolo Spring -  Fetching Water
The Water Project: Luyeshe Community, Matolo Spring -  Carrying Water
The Water Project: Luyeshe Community, Matolo Spring -  Vulenywa Fetching Water
The Water Project: Luyeshe Community, Matolo Spring -  Matolo Spring
The Water Project: Luyeshe Community, Matolo Spring -  Vulenywa Feeding Her Chicks
The Water Project: Luyeshe Community, Matolo Spring -  Working In The Kitchen
The Water Project: Luyeshe Community, Matolo Spring -  Man Watering His Cow
The Water Project: Luyeshe Community, Matolo Spring -  Bananas
The Water Project: Luyeshe Community, Matolo Spring -  Reuben Matolo
The Water Project: Luyeshe Community, Matolo Spring -  Truck Carrying Harvested Sugarcane To Factory
The Water Project: Luyeshe Community, Matolo Spring -  Sugarcane Farm
The Water Project: Luyeshe Community, Matolo Spring -  Traditional Household
The Water Project: Luyeshe Community, Matolo Spring -  Luyeshe Market
The Water Project: Luyeshe Community, Matolo Spring -  Community Members
The Water Project: Luyeshe Community, Matolo Spring -  Community Members

Project Status

Project Type:  Protected Spring

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 168 Served

Project Phase:  Under Construction
Estimated Install Date (?):  11/30/2018

Project Features

Click icons to learn about each feature.

Several families living in Luyeshe go to Matolo Spring for their water. The water is very dirty and even has algae growing on the surface. Containers are dunked under the water until full.

After discussions with community members, we learned that there’s no knowledge of water treatment here. People are drinking this water without treatment, and they are getting very sick.

“Every week someone has to fall sick due to drinking dirty water. Therefore, we spend a lot of money to buy drugs and also go to the hospital for treatment. I feel sorry for my grandchildren who are the most affected since their immunity is low. We can’t wait for our spring to be protected so that we can access clean and safe water,” shared Reuben Matolo, a 79-year-old farmer and resident living closest to the spring.

Luyeshe is situated in the rural part of Malava Constituency, a peaceful place to be away from noisy urban centers. People here plant sweet potatoes, sugarcane, maize, bananas, cassava, arrowroot, and other vegetables. Most buildings are made of mud with iron sheets for roofs.

An average day starts as early as 5:30am when women wake up to prepare their children for school by making breakfast. Men spend their days looking for an income through casual labor at the sugar factory or farming.

Women are seen as most responsible for their family’s hygiene and water-related activities. She starts the day by cleaning up around the house and rushing to the spring to fetch water. In fact, most women must make several trips to the spring, chatting with each other as they carry water. Between making meals throughout the day, women work in their garden kitchen or farm.

Once children return from school, they are able to help their mothers fetch more water. People retire to bed around 8:30pm since there is no electricity in the village.

Only half of the households have their own latrines, so many families are sharing with their neighbor. Most of these are overused and smelly, nor is there any water around to for someone to wash up after.

What we can do:


“Most homes in this area are dirty, and people do not understand the importance of good hygiene practices,” divulged Bilhah Vulenywa.

“Some people don’t take a bath for days and this has led to people becoming sick frequently. We need to be trained on improved hygiene and proper sanitation in order to improve our health standards.”

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.

Training will also inform the community and selected families on what they need to contribute to make this project a success. They must mobilize locally available materials, such as bricks, clean sand, hardcore, and ballast. The five families chosen for sanitation platforms must prepare by sinking a pit for the sanitation platforms to be placed over. All community members must work together to make sure that accommodations and food are always provided for the work teams.

Spring Protection

“I have been drinking water from this spring all my life and I never knew that the spring could be protected to provide clean water until I visited my nephew where he had protected his spring,” said Mr. Matolo.

“I admired the way it was built since it looked beautiful and the water coming from the inserted pipe is very clean. I asked him how he managed to do all that as it seemed expensive to construct, and he told me that he only contributed local materials (sand and stones) and the rest of the cost was taken care of by the organization. I have already collected the materials and I am waiting for you to come and protect our spring. I hope you will not let me down. God bless you for the good work you are doing for the communities.”

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.

Project Updates

10/24/2018: Timbito Project Moving to Neighboring Community

After a few delays, our field officers decided it necessary to construct a spring protection in a community that is fully willing to cooperate with each other and our organization. There were disagreements and challenges in Timbito, so we have asked their village leadership to submit a new application when everyone is fully prepared to work united on a project.

We were recommended to a nearby spring in Luyeshe Community. The people there have been drinking dirty water from Matolo Spring, and are so excited about this project that they’ve already gathered some sand to mix with our cement.

Please take a moment to read the new information and pictures posted about Luyeshe Community, and do not hesitate to reach out to us if you have any questions.

The Water Project : 2-kenya18126-community-members

08/15/2018: Scheduling for Timbito Community Spring Protection

Everyone in Timbito Community is excited about their new spring protection. Timing is very important as we ensure that everyone is ready for these big changes. The field officers and local leaders have agreed that the right time for construction and training will be over these next few months. We had previously scheduled this project for August but have modified that date to reflect the planning change made by the team. Thank you for standing with us as we continue work in Timbito.

We’re always open to conversation about our process and are happy to answer your questions. And, if you get a notice like this – it’s actually further proof your gifts are being carefully used towards a water project that lasts.

05/31/2018: Work Starting in Timbito Community

Dirty water from Katamba Spring is making people in Timbito 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!

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!