Project Status

Project Type:  Protected Spring

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 500 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Apr 2019

Functionality Status:  Functional

Last Checkup: 04/02/2024

Project Features

Click icons to learn about each feature.

Though the people in Ng'eny Barak have diverse talents, many locals think that farming is the only means, whether educated or illiterate, that can meet the needs of a family. The proceeds from the farms, especially cash crops like tea, helps the farmers get money for paying school fees for their children as well as buying other family items. People in this area wake up very early at 5am to work on their farms, which takes them through until 4pm in the evening when the day's target is achieved.

The 700 people in this area get their water from Ng’eny Barak Spring. The water is not safe for a person to drink given that the spring is located deep in a valley and is very open to all contaminants. Some people even bathe at the water source. Physically, there are rotten leaves and other solid materials that make the water very unsafe.

With these facts, urgent action must be taken to prevent the common waterborne diseases like cholera, typhoid and amoeba.

Being the only natural water source available in this community, accessing the spring can get difficult. It is hectic as community members crowd the source and make the water very dirty. The mud get stirs up from the bottom and it takes about two hours for the water to clear.

"Sometimes when I think of water from the spring, I feel like not drinking it because of fear of getting sick and losing my life at my young age," admitted 30-year-old Brenda.

"When we bought land in this place two years ago, people have not been able to concentrate on their farms and areas of engagement due to complaints of sickness attributed to use of water from the spring."

What we can do:


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, since handwashing is one of the most efficient ways to keep germs from spreading.

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 concrete latrine floors. These are a huge upgrade from wooden slats; they are safe and easy to clean.

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

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.

While the 700 people living here 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.

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

July, 2020: COVID-19 Prevention Training Update at Ng'eny Barak Community, Ng'eny Barak Spring

Our teams are working on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic. Join us in our fight against the virus while maintaining access to clean, reliable water.

We are carrying out awareness and prevention trainings on the virus in every community we serve. Very often, our teams are the first (and only) to bring news and information of the virus to rural communities like Ng'eny Barak, Kenya.

We trained more than 17 people on the symptoms, transmission routes, and prevention of COVID-19. Due to public gathering concerns, we worked with trusted community leaders to gather a select group of community members who would then relay the information learned to the rest of their family and friends.

We covered essential hygiene lessons:

- Demonstrations on how to build a simple handwashing station

- Proper handwashing technique

- The importance of using soap and clean water for handwashing

- Cleaning and disinfecting commonly touched surfaces including at the water point.

We covered COVID-19-specific guidance in line with national and international standards:

- Information on the symptoms and transmission routes of COVID-19

- What social distancing is and how to practice it

- How to cough into an elbow

- Alternative ways to greet people without handshakes, fist bumps, etc.

- How to make and properly wear a facemask.

During training, we installed a new handwashing station with soap near the community’s water point, along with a sign with reminders of what we covered.

Due to the rampant spread of misinformation about COVID-19, we also dedicated time to a question and answer session to help debunk rumors about the disease and provide extra information where needed.

We continue to stay in touch with this community as the pandemic progresses. We want to ensure their water point remains functional and their community stays informed about the virus.

Water access, sanitation, and hygiene are at the crux of disease prevention. You can directly support our work on the frontlines of COVID-19 prevention in all of the communities we serve while maintaining their access to safe, clean, and reliable water.

April, 2019: Ngeny Barak Community, Ngeny Barak Spring Project Complete

N'geny Barak Community is celebrating their new protected spring, so celebrate with them! N'geny Barak Spring has been transformed into a flowing, safe source of water thanks to your donation. The spring is protected from contamination, five sanitation platforms have been provided for the community, and training has been done on sanitation and hygiene.

Spring Protection

Construction at N'geny Barak Spring was successful and water is now flowing from the discharge pipe.

"This new spring is a new dawn to us after being very open for a very long time. If anybody - God forbid, tries to mess with this water source, we will make sure that he or she pays for it because we are going to take care of it very well," said Mrs. Shasala.

The Process:

Community members provided all locally available construction materials, e.g bricks, clean sand, wheelbarrows of ballast, and gravel. Community members also hosted our artisans for the duration of construction. Everything went well during the entire construction process. Community members including women and children carried sand to the site using buckets and basins, coming together with one mind to ensure that they would enjoy accessing safe drinking water.

Delivering our bags of concrete to the spring construction site

The spring area was excavated with jembes, hoes, and spades to create space for setting the foundation of polyethylene, wire mesh, and concrete.

After the base had been set, both wing walls and the headwall were set in place using brickwork. The discharge pipe was fixed low in place through the headwall to direct the water from the reservoir to the drawing area.

As the wing walls and headwall cured, the stairs were set and ceramic tiles were fixed directly below the discharge pipe.

The ceramic tiles installed under the discharge pipes protect the concrete from the erosive force of the falling water and beautifies the spring. The process of plastering the headwall and wing walls on both sides reinforces the brickwork and prevents water from the reservoir from seeping through the walls and allows pressure to build in the collection box to push water up through the discharge pipe.

The concrete dried over the course of five days, during which a community member wetted the concrete to make sure it would dry without cracking. The source area was filled up with clean stones and sand and covered with a polyethylene membrane to eliminate any potential sources of contamination.

We went as a team to meet the community at the spring to do an official handing over ceremony. With this spring now handed over to the community, we will continue to follow up with the water committee to make sure everything runs smoothly. The committee has already worked with the community to build a fence around the area to protect the new construction from wild animals.

Sanitation Platforms

All five sanitation platforms have been installed and make wonderful, easy to clean latrine floors. These five families are happy about this milestone of having a latrine of their own. We are continuing to encourage families to finish building walls and roofs over their new latrine floors.

New Knowledge

Through the help of the village elder Mr. Solomon Koech, we were able to arrange for hygiene and sanitation training. He found a good venue, set a time, and went around the community to invite people who rely on N'geny Barak Spring.

The training group posing with the notebooks they used to jot down the new things they learned

Being in the afternoon, the training was held when the weather was warm. Participants enjoyed sitting on a warm ground by the spring construction site. Since each topic applies to everyday health, the participants were very involved and had a lot to say.

Participants learned about:

– Leadership and governance
– Management and maintenance of the spring

Meeting by the spring made it simple to walk over and have a lesson about care and maintenance

– Family planning
– Personal hygiene, including handwashing

Step by step, the facilitator began introducing components of personal hygiene entailing bathing twice a day, proper dental hygiene, always wearing clean clothes and shaving. The trainer also talked about environmental hygiene that includes tree planting, maintaining cleanliness of the household compound, living in well-drained land (prevents mosquito breeding), and living in well-ventilated houses.

– Dental hygiene

– Waterborne and water-related disease, along with water treatment methods

"I am now 78 years old and have never learned how to properly wash my hands with soap, but today I am really happy to practice it now and always. Every topic covered is rich with information touching on the very key areas on hygiene which must be followed keenly, observed, and practiced. With all the knowledge shared today, I can surely promise that our family members will be able to do all that you people have taught us and that we shall have better lives," said Mr. Koech.

Thank You for making all of this possible!

February, 2019: Ngeny Barak Community, Ngeny Barak Spring Project Underway

Dirty water from Ngeny Barak Spring is making people in Ngeny Barak Community sick. Thanks to your generosity, we’re working to build a clean water point and much more.

Get to know this 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

Springs are water sources that come from deep underground, where the water is filtered through natural layers until it is clean enough to drink. Once the water pushes through the surface of the Earth, however, outside elements like waste and runoff can contaminate the water quickly. We protect spring sources from contamination with a simple waterproof cement structure surrounding layers of clay, stone, and soil. This construction channels the spring’s water through a discharge pipe, making water collection easier, faster, and cleaner. Each spring protection also includes a chlorine dispenser at the waterpoint so community members can be assured that the water they are drinking is entirely safe. Learn more here!

Giving Update: Ngeny Barak Community, Ngeny Barak Spring

February, 2021

A year ago, your generous donation helped Ngeny Barak Community in Kenya access clean water – creating a life-changing moment for Gloria. Thank you!

Keeping The Water Promise

There's an incredible community of monthly donors who have come alongside you in supporting clean water in Ngeny Barak Community.

This giving community supports ongoing sustainability programs that help Ngeny Barak Community maintain access to safe, reliable water. Together, they keep The Water Promise.

We’re confident you'll love joining this world-changing group committed to sustainability!

"Before this spring was protected, we used to drink bad water which was a struggle to fetch since the collection area was slippery and unstable to fetch water."

"The structure now looks very good and long-lasting. Water from the source is clear, clean, and safe for me to drink with confidence knowing that there is no contamination."

"I do not feel sick regularly throughout the year unlike before when I could fall sick more often."

"Thank you for coming in and chasing away diseases in our village."

"As a student, I can now do much more of my studies both at home and at school."

"The water from this source is used for various purposes, including drinking, which has promoted my well-being."

Gloria with community member Josphat Zangu at the spring before the pandemic.

Navigating through intense dry spells, performing preventative maintenance, conducting quality repairs when needed and continuing to assist community leaders to manage water points are all normal parts of keeping projects sustainable. The Water Promise community supports ongoing sustainability programs that help Ngeny Barak Community maintain access to safe, reliable water.

We’d love for you to join this world-changing group committed to sustainability.

The most impactful way to continue your support of Ngeny Barak Community – and hundreds of other places just like this – is by joining our community of monthly givers.

Your monthly giving will help provide clean water, every month... keeping The Water Promise.


Grace Capital Church
Madison Valley Baptist Church
Crow River Sunday School
Partner Engineering and Science
Provide water to others, In Honour of Ahmed Gulzar Gilani
5 individual donor(s)