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The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  New Latrines
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  New Latrines
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  New Latrines
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  Clean Water
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  Clean Water
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  Clean Water
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  Spring Construction
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  Spring Construction
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  Family Stands By A Recently Dug Pit For The New Platform
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  Training
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  Training
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  Training
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  Training
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  Training
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  Bricks Baking
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  Utensils On The Ground
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  Bathing Room
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  Latrine
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  Latrine
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  Miriam And Son At Home
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  Community Elders Discuss Their Spring
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  Mr Wefwafwa
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  Brian Drinking Water From Wefwafwa
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  Brian At Wefwafwa Spring
The Water Project: Tsivaka Community A -  Wefwafwa Spring

Project Status

Project Type:  Protected Spring

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 480 Served

Project Phase:  Installed - Nov 2017

Functionality Status:  Functional

Last Checkup: 04/20/2018

Project Features

Click icons to learn about each feature.

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

People in Tsivaka Village are usually up by 5 AM because they prefer to get work done before the sun gets too hot. A family’s morning schedule entails milking the cows and preparing breakfast, after which the man heads to the nearest shopping center to deliver milk that’s sold throughout the day. The man will head back to the market in the evening to collect his profits. He spends the brunt of the day looking for casual labor jobs that will make ends meet. One of these jobs is brick-making, causing many men to join the women and children in fetching water from their local spring to use for mixing up the bricks.

The woman remains behind to prepare the children for school, clean up the compound and do other household chores. She heads out to the farm until she needs to return home to prepare lunch for the entire family, even the children who return from school for a break. She then returns to the farm until 4 PM for dinner preparation. The family retires to bed at around 7:30 PM after the children have completed their homework. Children don’t work much later so as to save on the paraffin they must use for lighting.

Water Situation

Wefwafwa Spring is the main water source for Tsivaka. It currently serves 60 households, many who live quite a distance away. These distant households come to Tsivaka to get their water because all of their own water sources have dried up. This water is used for drinking, cooking, cleaning, brick-making, and irrigation.

Community members fixed a pipe in the eye of the spring so that they can hold their containers underneath until full. It’s nearly impossible to do this without stepping in the water pooled below. Water is then delivered home and poured between containers in the kitchen, living room, and latrine. The water in the living room is stored in covered clay pots and is intended for drinking, because it’s believed to stay as cool as a refrigerator!

After consuming water from Wefwafwa Spring, community members report waterborne sicknesses such as typhoid, cholera, and diarrhea.

Sanitation Situation

Under half of households have their own pit latrine. Those we visited are in a very poor state; some are collapsing, and others lack doors. Because of these low numbers and poor conditions, many community members opt to seek the privacy of plantations or brush to relieve themselves.

There are no hand-washing stations, and only a few helpful tools like dish racks and clotheslines. Mr. Geoffrey Liwa lives in this community and pastors a local church. He said, “The sanitation state in this community is so poor, much needs to be done in terms of health training in order to help our people. Most households do not have proper toilets, other do not have at all. This has been a health risk to all of us over the years, because when it rain it’s obvious all that water is drained to our water sources, and since it is a dry season we do not have an alternative water source for example rainwater. The health of the children is not good either, water-related diseases affect them most, we also have jiggers and other nutrition-related diseases like Kwashiorkor and Marasmus.”

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.

In addition, 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.

Project Updates

11/27/2017: Tsivaka Community Project Complete

Wefwafwa Spring in Tsivaka 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 organized by our contact person, Mr. Abraham Maloba. We met him and 12 other participants nearby the spring. Most of the people there were women, since women are looked to as most responsible for their family’s water, hygiene, and sanitation. The participants were most interested in learning how to improve the lives of their children.

Two of our facilitators 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, environmental hygiene, hygiene promotion, and many others.

Participants received new notebooks and pens to take notes with.

Demonstrations were some of the most popular parts of the training, with participants really appreciating getting their hands involved. We did this with hand-washing, teaching the 10 steps of washing with soap and running water. We also took participants to their spring, where construction had recently finished. There we were able to teach about proper spring use, management, and simple maintenance.

The artisan takes the community through spring protection management and maintenance.

Farmer and preacher Geoffrey Liwa was one of the few men who sacrificed the time to learn. He certainly did not regret this decision! “I am impressed that there are people out there who are concerned about us, more than any of us has ever been about ourselves. Sharing knowledge with us, overlooking the fact that most of us are illiterate; is a problem many are not willing to tackle and therefore prefer taking these projects to areas that look somehow developed. This is a show of great love; personally I have gained much more than I expected to. For young people as yourselves to take out time to train community members it takes great courage and sacrifice. I have taken the challenge and I will ensure every member of my congregation back at my church learns or gets hints of what I have learned myself.”

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 are continuing to encourage families to finish building walls and roofs over their new latrine floors.

This family has already constructed a traditional superstructure around their new sanitation platform.

Project Result: Spring Protection

Community members provided all locally available construction materials, e.g bricks, wheelbarrows of clean sand, wheelbarrows of ballast, fencing poles and hard core (crushed rock and gravel). Accommodation and food for the artisan were provided, and a few people even volunteered their time and strength to help the artisan with manual labor.

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.

This process has transformed Wefwafwa Spring into a clean water source. People gathered to celebrate this transformation and fetch their first buckets of clean water. Mr. Patrick Wavomba said, “We may not have anything to give you at the moment as an appreciation, other than what we have harvested. But we are so grateful for the new water source that assures us that our health is taken care of. We are excited to see our lives get transformed!”

The Water Project : 10-kenya4727-clean-water

06/19/2017: Clean Water Coming to Tsivaka Community A

Tsivaka Community will soon have a clean, safe source of water thanks to your donation. Community members have been drinking contaminated water from Wefwafwa Spring, and often suffer physical illnesses after doing so. Our partner conducted a survey of the area and deemed it necessary to protect the spring, build new sanitation platforms (safe, easy-to-clean concrete floors for latrines), and conduct sanitation and hygiene training. Thanks to your generosity, waterborne disease will no longer be a challenge for the families drinking the spring’s water. We look forward to sharing more details with you as they come! But for now, please take some time to check out the report containing community information, pictures, and maps.

The Water Project : 2-kenya4727-brian-at-wefwafwa-spring

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 leads to a concrete spring box and collection area. Safe water typically flows year-round and there is very limited ongoing maintenance needed!


Laurel Mill Elementary School
Florence MacDougall Community School
2017 Lenten Group
60 individual donor(s)