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The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Clean Water
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  At Namukuru Spring
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  All Is Successful At Namukuru Spring
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Success At Namukuru Spring
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  View Of Namukuru Spring
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  A Good Access System
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Victorious Handing Over
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Song And Dance Of Victory
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Beneficiries Of Namukuru Spring
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Keeping Hands Safe At Namukuru Spring
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Keeping Hands Safe At Namukuru Spring
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Clean Water Flowing
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Clean Water Flowing
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Already Busy Namukuru Spring
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Collecting Water From Namukuru Spring
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Training
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Coughing In Elbows
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Trainer Joyce Shows Hand Washing
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Trainer Joyce Rinsing Hands
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Hand Washing Session
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Hand Washing Session
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Hand Washing Session
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Trainer Jacky In Action
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  The Session Was Full Of Interactions
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Physical Distance Observed
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Participants Keenly Taking Notes
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  A Participant Asking A Question
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Placing Of Tiles
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Stone Pitching
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Stone Pitching
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Setting Up Of A Protective Fence
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Layer Of Large Rocks
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Planting Of Grass Above Catchment Area
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Reinforcing Head And Wing Walls With Clay
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Construction Of The Headwall And Wing Walls
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Construction Of The Headwall And Wing Walls
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Construction Of The Headwall And Wing Walls
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Construction Of The Headwall And Wing Walls
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Construction Of The Escape Channels
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Construction Of The Diversion Channels
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Back Filling With Soil
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Setting Up Of Stair Case
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Setting Up Of Stair Case
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Setting Up Of Foundation
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Covering With Plastic Sheeting
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Covering With Plastic
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Community Members Working Together
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Community Members Working Together
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Community Members Preparing Materials
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Community Members Preparing Materials
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Water Storage Plastic Tank
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Collecting Water From Namukuru Spring
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Collecting Water From Namukuru Spring
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Collecting Water From Namukuru Spring
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Current Sitution Of Namukuru Spring
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Landscape Around Nmukuru Spring
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Taking Water Home From Namukuru Spring
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Taking Water Home From Namukuru Spring
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Taking Water Home From Namukuru Spring
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Water Storage Clay Pot
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Chicken Picks Through A Garbage Pit
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Dish Rack
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Doing Dishes
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Home Compound With A Clothesline
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Inside The Kitchen
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Kids Playing
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Kitchen
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Latrine And Bathing Shelter
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Livestock
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Loice Wachiya
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community, Namukuru Spring -  Sharmil

Project Status



Project Type:  Protected Spring

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 600 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Jul 2021

Functionality Status:  Functional

Project Features


Click icons to learn about each feature.



Please note: original photos were taken before the COVID-19 pandemic.

Though Namukuru Spring serves 600 people including those who attend church at the nearby Anglican Church of Kenya, its water is far from desirable.

During the rainy season when it rains heavily, the spring water gets contaminated by soil washed directly into the spring. To ease access, community members have tried to improvise a discharge pipe using a plastic jug lodged into the earth. But the jug inevitably comes loose, gets dirty, and misses out on some of the spring’s discharge on either side of its opening. To reach the jug, people must step into the water that pools below it, exposing themselves to dangerous insects that bite them if they delay inside the water.

Because the spring has never dried up, people are not the only ones who rely on its water. The spring also attracts all sorts of animals like cats, dogs, and rodents which contaminate the area and the water. Furthermore, the spring is surrounded by bushes that harbor more dangerous insects and snakes. These are especially concerning for the many children who are sent to the spring by parents to help with household responsibilities.

The community reports frequent cases of diarrhea in the young and old alike. They attribute these illnesses to drinking the dirty spring water.

“I have severally suffered from diarrhea even in the last 1 week. I had gone to hospital because of the same; this is because we drink this water the way it is and it’s open – anything can drink it directly – and we still fetch it,” said 58-year-old farmer Loyce Wachiya.

“I do suffer from stomachache whenever I take this water because it’s not clean or safe for drinking,” added a young Sharmil.

What We Can Do:

Spring Protection

Protecting the spring will help provide access to cleaner and safer water and reduce the time people have to spend to fetch it. 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 a task predominantly carried out by women and young girls. Protecting the spring and offering training and support will, therefore, help empower the female members of the community by freeing up more of their time and energy to engage and invest in income-generating activities and their education.

Training on Health, Hygiene, COVID-19, and More

To hold trainings during the pandemic, we work closely with both community leaders and the local government to approve small groups to attend training. We ask community leaders to invite a select yet representative group of people to attend training who will then act as ambassadors to the rest of the community to share what they learn. We also communicate our expectations of physical distancing and wearing masks for all who choose to attend.

The training will focus on improved hygiene, health, and sanitation habits in this community. We will also have a dedicated session on COVID-19 symptoms, transmission routes, and prevention best practices.

With the community’s input, we will identify key leverage points where they can alter their practices at the personal, household, and community levels to affect change. This training will help to ensure participants have the knowledge they need about healthy practices and their importance to make the most of their water point as soon as water is flowing.

Our team of facilitators will use a variety of methods to train community members. Some of these methods include participatory hygiene and sanitation transformation, asset-based community development, group discussions, handouts, and demonstrations at the spring.

One of the most important issues 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 is consumed. We and the community strongly believe that all of these components will work together to improve living standards here, which will help to unlock the potential for these community members to live better, healthier lives.

We will then conduct a small series of follow-up trainings before transitioning to our regularly scheduled support visits throughout the year.

Training will result in the formation of a water user committee, elected by their peers, that will oversee the operations and maintenance of the spring. The committee 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 channels. The fence will keep out destructive animals and unwanted waste, and the drainage will keep the area’s mosquito population at a minimum.

 

Project Updates


07/09/2021: Namukuru Spring Project Complete!

Mukhuyu Community now has access to clean water! We transformed Namukuru Spring into a flowing source of water, thanks to your donation. Our team protected the spring and trained the community on improved sanitation and hygiene practices, including COVID-19 prevention.

"Access to reliable, safe water will enable me to reduce the cost that I've been spending on medication for typhoid. I will also be able to live healthily and continue doing my work on the farm for my daily living. Now that this waterpoint is complete, it will enable us as a community to unite and start-up projects that can help us generate income and improve our living standards," said Loise Namukuru, a 61-year-old female farmer.

Children were just as excited as the adults about the new water point.

"It will help me to get water easily and go back to school without getting late. I will no longer suffer from typhoid due to dirty water. I will not be absent from school due to typhoid. This will enable me to pass exams and help other communities to get clean water in the future," said Bravin, a 10-year-old boy.

Preparing for Spring Protection

Community members worked together to source and carry all locally available construction materials to the spring. These included bricks, sand, stones, and fencing poles. Some people also chiseled away at large stones to break them down into the gravel. Because people have to carry most items by hand, the materials collection process can take anywhere from a few weeks to months.

When everything was prepared, we sent a lorry to the community to deliver the rest of the construction materials, including the cement, plastic tarps, and hardware. Then, our artisan and field officers deployed to the spring to begin work. Individual households provided meals throughout each day to sustain the work team.

From Open Source to Protected Spring: A Step-by-Step Process

At last, it was time to dig in at the spring! Women and men lent their strength to the artisan each day to help with the manual labor. First, we cleared and excavated the spring area. Next, we dug a drainage channel below the spring and several surface runoff diversion channels above and around the spring. These help to divert environmental contaminants carried by the rains away from the spring.

To ensure community members could still fetch water throughout the construction process, we also dug temporary diversion channels from the spring’s eye around the construction site. This allowed water to flow without severely disrupting community members’ water needs or the construction work.

Excavation created space for setting the spring’s foundation made of thick plastic tarp, wire mesh, concrete, and waterproof cement. After setting the base, we started brickwork to build the headwall, wing walls, and stairs.

Next, we began one of the most crucial spring protection steps to ensure a fully functional water point: setting the discharge pipe. The discharge pipe has to be low enough in the headwall so that the water level inside never rises above the spring’s eye, yet high enough to leave eighteen to twenty inches between the pipe and the spring floor. This allows room for the average jerrycan (a 20-liter container) to sit beneath the pipe without making contact.

If we place the discharge pipe too high above the spring’s eye, too much backpressure could force the flow to emerge elsewhere. Too low, and community members would not be able to access the water easily. We embedded the pipe using clay (or mortar when the clay is in short supply) and placed it at a slight incline to ensure water flows in the right direction.

In coordination with brickwork, we pitched medium to large stones on both sides of the spring’s drainage channel. We then cemented and plastered each stone group into place, forming the rub walls. These help discourage people and animals from standing on that area, which could cause soil erosion and thus a clogged drainage area.

With brickwork and stone pitching completed, we turned to cementing and plastering both sides of the headwall and wing walls. These finishing layers reinforce the brickwork and prevent water in the reservoir from seeping through the walls. In turn, enough pressure builds in the reservoir box to push water out through the discharge pipe.

As the headwall and wing walls were curing, we cemented and plastered the stairs and installed four tiles beneath the discharge pipe. The tiles protect the concrete from the falling water’s erosive force while beautifying the spring and facilitating easy cleaning of the spring floor.

We transitioned to the final stages of construction with the tiles in place - backfilling the reservoir box. First, we cleared the collection box of any debris that may have fallen in since its construction, such as dead leaves or other items. Then we redirected the temporary diversion channels back into the reservoir box, channeling water into this area for the first time. We closed off all of the other exits to start forcing the water through the discharge pipe only.

With much help from the community, we filled up the reservoir area with the clean and large stones they gathered, arranging them in layers like a well-fitting puzzle. We covered the stones with a thick plastic tarp to minimize potential contamination sources from aboveground, followed by a layer of soil. We piled enough soil on top to create a slight mound to compensate for the backfill’s future settlement.

Community members transplanted grass onto the backfilled soil to help prevent erosion. Finally, the collection area was fenced to discourage any person or animal from walking on it since compaction can lead to disturbances in the backfill layers and potentially compromise water quality.

The entire construction process took about two weeks of work and patience to allow the cement and plaster to finish curing. As soon as it was ready, people got the okay from our field officers to fetch water. We officially handed over the spring directly following training to mark the community's ownership of the water point. Happiness, thanksgiving, and appreciation were the order of the day flowing in all directions.

During the dedication of Namukuru Spring, the community came out in large numbers. They sang celebration songs and danced to express their happiness and joy. They were really thankful to The Water Project for the clean water.

Training on Health, Hygiene, COVID-19, and More

Due to the ongoing challenges and restrictions amidst the pandemic, we worked with local leaders and the national Ministry of Health to gain approval for a small group training about health, hygiene, and COVID-19 prevention.

Together with the community, we found their preferred date for training while considering other community calendar events, such as the agricultural season and social events. We requested a representative group of community members to attend training to relay the information learned to the rest of their family and friends.

When the day arrived, facilitators Jacquey, Joyce, and David deployed to the site to lead the event. Fifteen people attended the training, including community-based leaders and village health volunteers. We held the training very early in the morning. Many showed up to participate, but the first fifteen were chosen since we had to limit the numbers able to attend.

Perhaps the most crucial topic of the day was our session on COVID-19 prevention and control. Due to the rampant spread of misinformation about COVID-19, we dedicated time to a question and answer session to help debunk rumors about the virus and provide extra information where needed.

We covered several other topics, including community participation in the project; leadership and governance; personal and environmental hygiene; water handling and treatment; operation and maintenance of the spring; dental hygiene; the ten steps of handwashing, and how to make and use a tippy tap and leaky tin. In addition, we held an election for the newly formed water user committee leaders during the leadership and governance session.

We also brainstormed income-generating activities that can be used to start a community savings account for any future minor repairs to the spring and a cooperative lending group to enable members to develop small businesses.

The most memorable topic was preserving clean water. Dinah Mwaro, the community health volunteer, mentioned that she had problems ensuring that community members take clean water to avoid water-related diseases, but this could never be achieved since the spring was unprotected and open to defecation. She used this forum to encourage trainees to participate in taking care of the spring to continue enjoying clean water and good health.

Dinah said, "The training has really helped me to reinforce matters of hygiene in this community as a health volunteer. I have also gained new knowledge such as personal hygiene, which I intend to walk with and spread to the community members."

When an issue arises concerning the water project, the water user committee is equipped with the necessary skills to rectify the problem and ensure the water point works appropriately. However, if the issue is beyond their capabilities, they can contact our field officers to assist them. Also, we will continue to offer them unmatchable support as a part of our ongoing monitoring and maintenance program.

Thank you for making all of this possible!


The Water Project : kenya21310-success-at-namukuru-spring-1


06/16/2021: Namukuru Spring Project Underway!

Dirty water from Namukuru Spring is making people in Mukhuyu, Kenya sick. Thanks to your generosity, we’re working to install 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 news of success!


The Water Project : kenya20012-collecting-water-from-namukuru-spring-1


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 pours through a reinforced pipe in a concrete headwall to a paved collection area. Safe water typically flows year-round and there is very limited ongoing maintenance needed!


Contributors

Watson Family Charitable Fund