Project Status

Project Type:  Protected Spring

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 200 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Nov 2017

Functionality Status:  Water Flowing - Needs Attention

Last Checkup: 03/10/2024

Project Features

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Community Profile

Handidi's community members wake up early in the morning, with women preparing breakfast for their families. Children get ready for school Monday thru Friday. Women then go to the spring to fetch water both for drinking and the day's chores.

Men look for casual labor; most end up making bricks or breaking huge rocks into smaller sizes for sale, while others endeavor motorcycle taxiing businesses commonly known as 'boda boda' to earn their livings. Some spend time on their small farms tilling, weeding or harvesting. The most popular crops are maize, beans, cassava, sweet potatoes, and groundnuts. These crops are normally consumed by locals, without any leftovers to sell. Other plots of land host sugarcane and tea; these crops can be sold for good profit, but are also very difficult to grow. Sugarcane takes about two years to be harvested.  Tea is also very sensitive to weather changes, and is often lost during the rainy season that brings cold and hail. However, the community members still don't opt for easier vegetable crops instead. They believe that uprooting these tea plants grown by their ancestors is not good, as their spirits may hunt them or bring misfortune to their families.

Most here live below the poverty line, and cannot afford their basic needs or education for their children. Children often have to drop out of school to find work.

The land where Handidi sits is a bit ragged and rocky, making it difficult to reach.

Water Situation

One of the main water sources in Handidi is Kadasia Spring, with about 200 locals depending on it for all of their water needs. This includes drinking, cooking, cleaning, and watering uses.

Since this water source is not properly protected, it is open to contamination from many different source including human and animal activity as well as surface runoff that washes waste into the water.

Community members bring different sizes of containers to fetch water, ranging anywhere from 3 to 20 liters, depending on how much they can carry. There is a plastic pipe that has been fixed in the ground which funnels water out into these containers.

When delivered home, this water is poured into different containers in the living room, kitchen, and latrine. The water in the living room is kept in a clay pot that keeps it cool for drinking.

After drinking this water, community members suffer from waterborne diseases like typhoid and cholera.

Sanitation Situation

Sanitation facilities in this community are in poor condition, though most of the community members do not even have pit latrines. The most common pit latrines have logs for floors. These logs are prone to termites and rot, making them risky for users. Those who do not have pit latrines share with their neighbors, while others practice open defecation in bushes near their homes.

Hygiene practices in the community are also poor; most people do not wash their hands after visiting pit latrines. None of them have improvised hand-washing facilities. Bathing rooms are not common, with the most common bathrooms made of local or used materials, and others made of "live fence," where they plant a type of tree in a circular manner. Compounds are dirty, because refuse has been disposed of everywhere.

Clotheslines and dish racks are also not common in this community. Most of them sun dry their clothes and utensils on the ground, bushes, or roofs.

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. This community is particularly needy, with a dirty water source and poor living standards; living below a dollar a day, they have no money to get medical care for treating the diseases that affect them. This spring protection will help them stay healthy and not need that medical care! Pastor Daniel Mangara said, "I sincerely thank God for far he has brought us. We have been drinking this water thinking that it is clean, but results has not been that way. Each and every family, during raining season and dry season at least two people in a family go for medications. We are living with God's mercies."

Project Updates

November, 2020: Through Their Eyes: COVID-19 Chronicles with Zachariah Kadasia

This post is part of a new series by The Water Project meant to highlight the perspectives and experiences of the people we serve and how the COVID-19 pandemic is impacting them. We invite you to read more of their stories here.

Our team recently visited Handidi to conduct a COVID-19 prevention training and monitor their water point, Kadasia Spring. Shortly after, we returned to check in on the community, offer a COVID-19 refresher training, and ask how the pandemic affects their lives.

During this most recent visit, Zachariah Kadasia shared his story of how the coronavirus is impacting his life and his community. Zachariah is a 60-year-old farmer in the community. He is also the landowner and family namesake of Kadasia Spring.

Mr. Zachariah Kadasia was seated for his interview outside his home.

Field Officer Patience Njeri met Zachariah outside his home to conduct the interview. Both Patience and Zachariah observed physical distancing and other precautions throughout the visit to ensure their health and safety. The following is Zachariah's story, in his own words.

What is one thing that has changed in your community since the completion of the water project?

"Life for us has changed completely. Things have become easier for us. Water is no longer a challenge for us. We are assured of clean, safe water for our day to day use."

How has having a clean water point helped you through the pandemic so far?

"With access to clean and safe water, sanitization is not a challenge at all. We sanitize anytime we want to, thus reducing the chances of contracting the virus."

Zachariah at the spring with his wife

Since the outbreak of COVID-19 in Kenya, has fetching water changed for you because of restrictions, new rules, or your concerns about the virus?

"Yes, fetching water has changed. At first, people had a lot of fear, not knowing how to handle themselves at the water point. But with the regulations put in place, people have become more conversant about the situation and found ways to cope."

How has COVID-19 impacted your family?

"I have children, and some of them work in different towns. With the start of the pandemic, they had to come home due to the loss of jobs because they were doing menial jobs."

At home

What other challenges are you experiencing due to the COVID-19 pandemic?

"Meeting of day to day needs has been a challenge since the start of the pandemic. Affording basic needs like food and soap has been a great challenge; we have to go the extra mile."

Checking on his bananas

What hygiene and sanitation steps have you and your community took to stop the spread of the virus?

"Right now, we have to put on our masks every time we leave our houses to go outside. Also, we have installed tippy taps to aid in handwashing. At the market, we have to maintain social distance."

Handwashing with soap and clean water from the spring using a homemade leaky tin hanging from the roof

Like most governments worldwide, the Kenyan government continues to set and adjust restrictions both nationally and regionally to help control the spread of the virus.

What restriction were you most excited to see lifted already?

"The gathering of people for church. I had missed the fellowship with other believers."

What restriction are you still looking forward to being lifted?

"I look forward to seeing every child being allowed to go to school."

Zachariah in his mask

When asked where he receives information about COVID-19, Zachariah listed the radio, television, and our team's sensitization training.

What has been the most valuable part of the COVID-19 sensitization training you received from our team?

"The making of masks was beneficial. Also, steps in handwashing came in handy."

September, 2018: A Year Later: Kadasia Spring

A year ago, generous donors helped protect Kadasia Spring for Handidi Community in Kenya. The contributions of incredible monthly donors and others giving directly to The Water Promise allow 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...

November, 2017: Handidi Community Project Complete

Kadasia Spring in Handidi 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

We informed Mr. Zachary M. Kadasia about the need for hygiene and sanitation training, who promised to inform all his neighbors on the same. He spoke with them to decide on the best two days for training, and then invited them to meet us at his homestead for training. Mr. Kadasia lives just a couple meters from the spring, so it was easy for us to take participants over there for some onsite management and maintenance training.

There were 15 participants. Though some were late, everyone ended up participating enthusiastically in group discussions, role plays, and demonstrations.

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.

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 facilitator, in the orange shirt, encouraging community members as they practice the 10 steps of hand-washing they learned.

69-year-old Daniel Mmangale was one of the participants. "I am very thankful for bringing us this project here. We have suffered a lot before on consuming water from this source that used to be exposed to different agents of contamination. With today's training, it has really enlightened us on water handling, waterborne diseases, and their care and prevention."

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.

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.

Men delivering dirt for the artisan to use.

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 Kadasia Spring into a clean water source. People gathered to celebrate this transformation and fetch their first buckets of clean water. Mr. Bernard Mbakaya met some other community members at the spring for this celebration. "First of all I want to thank God for enabling us see this day. About the new safe water, I am very grateful for blessing us with safe water for drinking and for domestic chores. Thank You! This is a good health to us as the spring is no longer exposed to agents of contamination, causing diseases."

And according to Mr. Mmangale, this project brought the community members together as they achieved a common purpose. As they collected all of the sand and stones that would be needed to supplement our materials, they witnessed that unity really is their strength. Together, they can achieve more! As health improves with the presence of clean and safe water, time and money will be unlocked for the entire community's economic development.

October, 2017: Handidi Community Project Underway

Handidi Community will soon have a clean, safe source of water thanks to your donation. Community members have been drinking contaminated water from Kadasia 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.

Project Videos

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: Kadasia Spring

September, 2018

People now have a reliable source that produces safe water even during the driest months of the year.

Keeping The Water Promise

There's an incredible community of monthly donors who have come alongside you in supporting clean water in Handidi Community 3.

This giving community supports ongoing sustainability programs that help Handidi Community 3 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, generous donors helped protect Kadasia Spring for Handidi Community in Kenya. The contributions of incredible monthly donors and others giving directly to The Water Promise allow 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 Jonathan Mutai with you.

"I am happy and thankful for the protection of our spring," Simon Amwaya, a 16-year-old boy who lives in Handidi, said.

"My life has changed because I don't frequently get sick from waterborne diseases. This is because we now access clean and safe water."

The whole community is happy with the protected spring. It is very easy to access and containers fill up quickly - even during the dry season. The waterborne diseases that derailed development here have drastically decreased. The clean and neat compounds seen as one enters this area is evidence that sanitation and hygiene have also improved.

"Since the protection of the spring, we are fetching safe clean water because the source is not exposed to any contamination. It is not like before where you could easily spot cow dung floating on the surface of the water, especially during the raining season," Zachary Kadasia, the chair of the water user committee, said.

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 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.

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 protected spring in Handidi is changing many lives.

People now are spending money on this that help their families improve their economic standing, rather than on medicine due to waterborne illnesses. The spring is well cared for, as is the area around it. All of this is proof of the value of the spring to the people living in Handidi.

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 Handidi Community 3 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 Handidi Community 3 – 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.