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The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Oscar Preparing Firewood
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Outside Kitchen
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Peter Doing Carpentry At Home
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Pot Used For Storing Drinking Water
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Steven Ondodi
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Steven Ondodi
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Storage Containers
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Carrying Water
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Water Source
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Water Source
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Water Source
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Carrying Water
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Carrying Water
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Carrying Water
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Carrying Water
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Jane Collecting Utensils
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Jane Digging Drainage For The Spring
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Jane Inside Her Kitchen
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Jane Storing Water
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Jane Sweeping Yard
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Jane Collecting Water
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Feeding Cow
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Mary At The Spring
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Mary Carrying Water
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Mary Hanging Clothes
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Bathing Shelter
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Cattle Grazing Field
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Children Playing
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Clothesline
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Collecting Water
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Cow And Pen
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Dishrack
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Drying Clothes
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Filling Jerrycan
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Homes
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Inside Kitchen
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Landscape
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Latrine Made Of Mud Walls
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Leaky Tin
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Long Walk Back
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Mary In Her Garden
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Mary In Kitchen
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Mary Shitundo
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Mary Storing Water
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Oscar Preparing Firewood
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Outside Kitchen
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Peter Building
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Scooping Water
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Steven Ondodi
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Storage Containers
The Water Project: Lunyinya Community, Steven Shitundo Spring -  Water Storage

Project Status



Project Type:  Protected Spring

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Project Phase:  Donate to this Project
Estimated Install Date (?):  06/17/2022

Project Features


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Some of the 154 people in Lunyinya Community have to walk for an hour each way to reach Steven Shitundo Spring – once in the morning, and then again in the evening. After their long journey, they are often met with overcrowding and long lines at the water point.

The spring area is steep. There are no stairs, and the spring is located in a water catchment area, which makes the waterpoint very difficult to access, especially during the rainy season, and especially for the older members of the community, and expectant mothers.

Rather than suffering this constant inconvenience, many people in the community choose to go without water. Some don’t bathe for long stretches in an effort to conserve the water they can get. Others try not washing utensils, dishes, and clothes as often as they know they should.

“Life is full of challenges, water being one of them,” said a local farmer, Steven Ondondi. “[This has] really contributed to a poor state of hygiene. People skipping bathing, washing clothes, and even others using utensils twice without cleaning. This has really contributed to health complications and costs incurred for treatment.”

The rate of poverty in Lunyinya is so high that many parents can’t afford to medicate their children when they become sick from contaminated water and poor hygiene practices. Common diseases in this region are cholera, typhoid, coughing, and diarrhea – all preventable with a source of clean water.

For a community of sugarcane farmers, time spent sick at home or in the hospital means time their fields go neglected: their only source of income lying fallow. This means many villagers cannot afford to pay their children’s school fees.

“Growing up in this community, I have experienced a lot,” said Mary Shitundo, a local farmer and community member. “Lack of access to clean and safe water has contributed to absenteeism among pupils in school.”

“Diseases affect us,” Mary continued. “The time factor also contributes to not achieving our daily activities, due to overcrowding of people at the water source, and the high number of people fetching water.”

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.

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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