Project Status

Project Type:  Protected Spring

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 315 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Jul 2017

Functionality Status:  Functional

Last Checkup: 07/06/2024

Project Features

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Community Profile

This project is a part of our shared program with Western Water and Sanitation Forum (WEWASAFO). Our team is pleased to directly share the below report (edited for clarity, as needed).

Welcome to the Community

A typical day here consists of fetching water at 6 AM for cooking, drinking and cleaning, heading to the farm to work, coming home at midday to prepare lunch, returning to the farm to work, then going home in the evening to prepare supper, cleaning the house and then going to bed, exhausted.

Water Situation

Rosa Spring is unprotected and is thus open to contamination from many different sources. Animals are free to come and go when thirsty, and when it rains waste is washed into the spring.

Locals have fixed a banana stem at the eye of the spring, which functions as a makeshift discharge pipe. Containers from 10 to 20 liters in size are held underneath this pipe until full. When delivered back home, water is separated into containers by intended use; some at the latrine, kitchen, and family room.

Community members have spent a lot of money trying to see Rosa Spring protected, but this has never succeeded due to lack of technical and artisanal skills. This being an election year, some aspiring politicians even promised to get Elukho Community clean water to earn their votes. The elections are over, and they still haven't come through. Due to this, the community is very sensitive and does not want to risk being cheated again. When they first met us, they assumed that we were like those politicians who take advantage of others.

Thankfully, one of the community members pointed out our recent work at nearby Elukho Primary School. After a visit there, the villagers trust us to get the job done. "We are happy that our spring is going to be protected. This will help us not to walk long distances we have (been) walking looking for clean safe water for drinking," said Geoffrey. That’s one of our goals, Geoffrey!

Sanitation Situation

Less than half of households in Elukho Community have their own pit latrine. An average pit latrine is made of mud walls and grass-thatched roofs. The floor is a packed mixture of mud and cow dung.

There are only a couple of dish racks and clotheslines in the community, while nobody has a hand-washing station. However, everyone seems very excited about the opportunity to attend training sessions on good hygiene and sanitation practices.

Plans: Hygiene and Sanitation Training

Community members will attend hygiene and sanitation training for at least two days. This training will ensure participants are no longer ignorant 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.

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.

Plans: Sanitation Platforms

On the final day of training, participants will select five families that should benefit from new latrines.

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 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.

Plans: Spring Protection

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.

Protecting Rosa Spring will ensure that its water is safe, adequate and secure. Construction will keep surface runoff and other contaminants out of the water.

Project Updates

October, 2018: A Year Later: Elukho Community

A year ago, your generous donation helped us protect Rosa Spring for Elukho Community in Kenya. The contributions of incredible monthly donors and others giving directly to The Water Promise allow our local teams to visit project sites throughout the year, strengthening relationships with communities and evaluating the water project over time. These consistent visits allow us to learn vital lessons and hear amazing stories. Read more...

July, 2017: Elukho Community Project Complete

Rosa Spring in Elukho Community, Kenya is now a protected, clean 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 given in sanitation and hygiene. Imagine the changes that all of these resources are going to bring for these residents! You made it happen!  Now, want to do a bit more? Join our team of monthly donors and help us maintain this spring protection and many other projects.

We just updated the project page with the latest pictures, so make sure to check them out! And please enjoy the rest of the report from our partner in Kenya:

Project Result: New Knowledge

Hygiene and sanitation training was scheduled on days recommended by the community members to ensure good attendance. The majority of those who came were women, because women are seen as those most responsible for water, sanitation and hygiene in their homes.

2 kenya4718 training

Training topics included but were not limited to 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, environmental hygiene, and hygiene promotion. We also took a session to emphasize proper maintenance of the spring protection project. The community should refrain from washing clothes, watering animals, farming with fertilizers, and open defecation in the vicinity.

6 kenya4718 training

We brought poster paper and illustrations that facilitated discussion on healthy and unhealthy behaviors. Group discussions were also very effective in helping participants take responsibility for what they were learning. And since we were so close to the spring, we could take the group over there to do onsite training in management and maintenance.

28-year-old Linet Anyang learned a lot. She said, "I was not aware that sanitation and hygiene go beyond my personal hygiene and that of my household, since from the past the environment has been left to those who care to manage it, and no one does that anymore. This training has taught me that minding what I do will affect the lives of my neighbors positively, since the dirt in my home easily gets washed into the water source that we all consume as a village. I learned something new today, and am so grateful."

Project Result: Sanitation Platforms

All five sanitation platforms have been installed and are ready for use. These five families are happy about this milestone and are optimistic that there will be much less open defecation. People without proper latrines would often use the privacy of bushes, but now have a private place of their own. It is expected that proper use of latrine facilities provided by the sanitation platforms will go a long way in reducing environmental pollution here. We will continue to encourage these five families to build walls and roofs to protect their new platforms.

18 kenya4718 sanitation platform

Project Result: Spring Protection

Our artisan arrived in Elukho Community to begin work on the spring, but found that nobody had prepared by delivering sand and stones to the construction site. After looking into this, we discovered that the community never really believed we would be true to our word; they had so many people make false promises to gain votes in elections. But once our artisan actually showed up with cement and tools, the community quickly snapped into action to help find the other materials he'd need. Others even volunteered their time and strength to work alongside the artisan.

9 kenya4718 construction

Local men also helped our artisan mix cement to be used for the foundation and walls of the spring.

The spring area was excavated to create space for setting the foundation of polythene, wire mesh and concrete. After the base had been set, both wing walls and the head wall were set in place using brickwork. The discharge pipe was fixed low in place through the head wall to direct the water from the reservoir to the drawing area.

As the wing walls and head wall were curing, the stairs were set and the tiles were fixed directly below the discharge pipe. This reduces the erosive force of the falling water and beautifies the spring. The process of plastering the head wall 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.  Lastly, the base of the spring was plastered and the collection box was cleaned. The source area was filled up with clean hardcore and covered with a polythene membrane to eliminate any potential sources of contamination. Finally, grass was planted and cutoff drains dug to direct surface water away from the spring box.

13 kenya4718 construction

The artisan plastering over the bricks. This is also followed up with a waterproof layer.

Mr. Geoffrey Juma told us "The people, as you can see, are excited to have such a great project in our community. We will now be able to access clean and safe water and our children will no longer be affected by water-related diseases such as typhoid. Our women will now have an easy time getting water and spend less time at this activity; they will therefore spend their time doing other activities. This is such a blessing!"

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!

A Year Later: Elukho Community

October, 2018

“I feel healthier now that I know I am drinking safe water.” – Mary Khasiala

Keeping The Water Promise

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

This giving community supports ongoing sustainability programs that help Elukho 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!

A year ago, your generous donation helped us protect Rosa Spring for Elukho Community in Kenya. The contributions of incredible monthly donors and others giving directly to The Water Promise allow our local teams to visit project sites throughout the year, strengthening relationships with communities and evaluating the water project over time. These consistent visits allow us to learn vital lessons and hear amazing stories – and we’re excited to share this one from Christine Luvandwa with you.

This protected spring has helped improve the health of people living in Elukho Community. Implementation of the water project has enabled this community to easily access clean and safe water. The spring is at the bottom of a steep slope and used to get so contaminated as rainwater washed dirt into the water. Now that it is protected and there is proper drainage, that is no longer an issue.

"I feel healthier now that I know I am drinking safe water," Mary Khasiala told us. "My children and I hardly get sick."

From left to right: Christine Luvandwa, Philius Akola, and Mary Khasiala

"My life has changed in a way that I now have clean drinking water at any time I want," 13-year-old Philius Akola said.

"I now have water that I can drink without worry of contamination. The spring also provides plenty of water for our animals and household chores, like cleaning my clothes."

Protection of the spring is only one step along the journey toward sustainable access to clean water. The Water Project is committed to consistent monitoring of each water source. Our monitoring and evaluation program, made possible by donors like you, allows us to maintain our relationships with communities by visiting up to 4 times each year to ensure that the water points are safe and reliable.

This visit with Mary and Philius resulted in us sending our artisan to fix the discharge pipe:

The recently repaired discharge pipe. This pipe makes it much easier to fetch water!

This is just one of the many ways that we monitor projects and communicate with you. Additionally, you can always check the functionality status and our project map to see how all of our water points are performing, based on our consistent monitoring data.

Children wave hello during a monitoring visit in November 2017.

One project is just a drop in the bucket towards ending the global water crisis, but the ripple effects of this project are truly astounding. This spring in Elukho is changing many lives.

This is only possible because of the web of support and trust built between The Water Project, our local teams, the community, and you. We are excited to stay in touch with this community and support their journey with safe water.

Read more about The Water Promise and how you can help.

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 Elukho 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 Elukho 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.