Project Status

Project Type:  Protected Spring

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 250 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Jul 2019

Functionality Status:  Functional

Last Checkup: 02/02/2024

Project Features

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"Most people try every means to treat the water from the spring, but many cannot access the chemicals," said Mr. Evans Misigo.

"Hence, they end up drinking the water as raw as it is from the source, which has made so many of us sick. This paralyzes the workforce needed and also makes the pupils miss school because of illness."

"Sometimes, children come to this spring and starts playing, making the water very dirty. This causes a lot of delays and crowding at the water source as people wait for the water to settle before fetching water," Mrs. Nelly Muyonga added.

"With the state that our spring is in, we always say it is only by the grace of God that we are still breathing and moving around because anything can happen to us especially when our water is tampered with either by natural or deliberate contamination."

The 250 people living in this part of Wajumba rely on Wajumba Spring. The water at this spring is unprotected and fully open to contamination. Since the water has pooled at ground level, people just dip their containers under the water until full. The water is unsafe for human consumption, and money is wasted to treat preventable illnesses.

A normal day in Wajumba starts very early in the morning at 5am when people wake up to eat breakfast. They carry their jembes and hoes to work on their farms from morning until evening.

Large families live together at their household compounds, sharing whatever they have with each other. In most cases, extended families live in a separate mud home from the nuclear families just a stone’s throw away. There is a diversity of talents within the community, but most of the locals are cash crop farmers who depend solely on the harvest of tea for their monthly income. As the parents earn their money, their first priority is to meet the needs of their children and pay their school fees.

Living day to day, each moment sick from dirty water could mean lost income and no dinner on the table in the evening.

What we can do:


It is really encouraging to see this community take the initiative of having hygiene facilities within their compounds such as leaky tins near their pit latrines, clothe lines and dish racks. Also, nearly 99% of the households have pit latrines for human waste disposal which has reduced cases of open defecation in the area. More efforts are needed on improving the kind of sanitation facilities they use as well as educating the locals on proper hygiene practices like having a soap near the leaky tins and proper disposal of garbage.

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 most 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

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

June, 2020: COVID-19 Prevention Training Update at Wajumba Community, Wajumba 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.

A community member shows the COVID-19 informational pamphlet she received at training

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 Wajumba, Kenya.

We trained more than 21 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.

Training in session

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.

Prevention reminders chart installed at the spring

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.

Observing social distancing

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.

July, 2019: Wajumba Community, Wajumba Spring Project Complete

Wajumba Community now has clean water! Wajumba Spring has been transformed into a flowing source of clean 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

Water is now flowing from the discharge pipe at Wajumba Spring, giving community members a quick and easy way to fetch water for drinking, cooking, and cleaning.

We met community members at the spring to celebrate the transformation.

"This water point is the best I have ever seen! I am happy that this spring is protected now when I am still alive to at least have a test of safe, clean water. My heart is full of joy to see such a project being completed peacefully within a very short period of time using materials around us. May God bless all the donors for the support they gave us by considering our suffering as a community through protection of our spring," said Mr. Misigo.

The people living here see the protection of Wajumba Spring as salvation for their years of overlooked suffering. Political leaders have focused their improvement efforts only in areas perceived to be their strongholds, leaving the majority of the population in dire need.

Indeed, from the faces of the old, middle-aged, and the young, you can now see a glow of relief as though a burden was taken off their shoulders. People used to have to wait a long time for their turn to fetch water from the spring when it was an open source. The water would get dirtier the more people dunked their containers under the surface. Now that the spring is protected, community members can now fetch water from this new source with a lot of confidence within a very short time. They are so grateful that someone finally came along to help them achieve this important step in the development of Wajumba Village.

The construction process went on well with both our artisan and volunteers from the community working together harmoniously till completion of the spring. Women helped a lot in ferrying the supplementary materials to the site, while men assisted in doing the labor.

The Process

The construction process at Wajumba Spring began with clearing the site using jembes, hoes, spades, and hammers to remove stones and clay. Once clear and level, our artisan could form the base for the slab.

Excavating for the foundational slab

A thick plastic tarp was laid out, followed by wire mesh and a mixture of sand, ballast, cement, and water was mixed to make a stable foundation. This was left to dry for 12 hours. Brickwork then followed where the walls and the staircases were done, also using sand, cement, and waterproof cement.

The discharge pipe was then fitted at the headwall 20 inches high so that community members can place a jerrycan underneath. Plastering was then done and the tiles are fitted just under the discharge pipe so the slab won't be damaged by the falling water.

The spring was cured for 48 hours as backfilling was done using hardcore and and plastic over the top.

Soil was piled over the protected area and the community planted grass to prevent erosion. The spring was then left to dry for five days before the community was allowed to start using the water point at their convenience.

Through the formation of a water user management committee over the course of this project, rules and regulations they set with the community will greatly help in resolving issues and sustaining the spring. Furthermore, the community members were strongly urged to always contact the organization for any advice.

Sanitation Platforms

All five sanitation platforms have been installed. These five families are happy about this milestone of having a private latrine of their own and are optimistic that people will no longer have to use the bathroom outdoors. We are continuing to encourage families to finish building walls and roofs over their new latrine floors.

New Knowledge

Hygiene and sanitation training was planned and organized by both the field officer and one of the community members by the name Nelly Muyonga. Nelly was given the mandate by the other community members to lead the process of project implementation. She reached out to neighbors and urged them to attend the training despite their tight schedules planting, weeding, and harvesting crops. Men and women of different ages were invited to ensure that there is equal sharing of information and distribution of responsibilities.

It was a hot afternoon with a clear sky, providing a good atmosphere for participants to sit on the ground near the spring. The training was done near the spring site because it was a very good venue central to all the community members.

We covered several topics including leadership and governance; operation and maintenance of the spring; healthcare; family planning; immunizations; the spread of disease and prevention. We also covered water treatment methods, personal care like handwashing, environmental hygiene, hygiene promotion, and many other things.

The facilitator explained the need to properly manage and sustain the spring. They were informed that care-taking duties be done diligently, such as clearing brush along the path to the spring and cleaning up litter. Other highlighted activities were fencing of the spring, making cutoff drainage, proper use of the stairs, and planting of grass to control soil erosion.

The fence was primarily built to keep out animals or children that could trample the protected area and damage the water point

There was a heated discussion as community members voiced their opinions, though. At some point, two participants argued sharply on the issue of not allowing cattle to graze near the spring. One of the participants ended up having to leave the group for a while to allow their temper to cool down. That person who got very angry had been bringing their animals to graze by Wajumba Spring and was told point blank by another participant that what they are doing endangers the community's water supply.

Aspects of water safety were also discussed at large by pointing out the bad ways of handling water from the spring on the way home, at home, and all the way until consumption.

Due to exchange of ideas, they all agreed that to eradicate all water-related diseases, water safety is the first tool to be employed. They want to boil the water, use solar disinfection, and other approved chemicals such as water guard and chlorine.

"This training has covered everything that our community members should listen to. From today, we are going to put into practice whatever we have been taught, especially proper water handling to avoid contamination," said Mrs. Nancy Salano.

June, 2019: Wajumba Community, Wajumba Spring Project Underway

Dirty water from Wajumba Spring is making people in Wajumba Community sick. Thanks to your generosity, we’re working to solve this issue by building 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 again with news of success!

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: Wajumba Community, Wajumba Spring

February, 2021

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

Keeping The Water Promise

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

This giving community supports ongoing sustainability programs that help Wajumba 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!

"It was hard getting water from the open pool that we had initially. We used to get frustrated by the dirt that polluted the waters."

"We used to suffer from typhoid because the water used to get polluted by the stormwater and run-off from uphill."

"It was so hard to get water during the dry season because people used to crowd at the spring."

"We now get clean water which is also easy to collect from the discharge pipe."

"The protected spring has reduced cases of waterborne disease outbreaks. No one has ever contracted typhoid since the spring was protected."

"We also have clean drinking water for use at home."

"Children can now enjoy water collection from Wajumba Spring, at close range, without fear of queueing for water or wading through dirty water when fetching it."

"I am just happy that this spring has helped us be able to drink clean water."

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 Wajumba 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 Wajumba 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.


In Honor of Samid Tursunovic
2 individual donor(s)