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The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Sanitation Platform
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Sanitation Platform
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Clean Water
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Clean Water
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Clean Water
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Clean Water
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Clean Water
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Construction
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Construction
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Construction
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Construction
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Construction
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Man Delivering Bricks
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Onsite Training
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Onsite Training
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Hand Washing
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Hand Washing
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Training
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Training
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Training
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Kitchen
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Broken Dish Rack
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Dish Rack
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Clothesline
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Latrine
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Homestead
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Sugarcane Plantation
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Arrowroot Plantation
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Villagers Watch As We Inspect Their Spring
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Balancing Water
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Fetching Water
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Fetching Water
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Shikhanga Spring
The Water Project: Mukhuyu Community -  Mrs Dorah Fetching Water

Project Status

Project Type:  Protected Spring

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 200 Served

Project Phase:  Installed - Nov 2017

Functionality Status:  Functional

Last Checkup: 06/25/2018

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

All of Mukhuyu Community wakes up early in the morning at about 6am. Women prepare breakfast for their families while the children get ready for school. Thereafter, women engage in household chores ranging from milking cows and  fetching water from the spring to tilling and weeding their small pieces of land. They grow crops such as arrowroot, cassava and other vegetables both for subsistence and sale.

Children attend school from Monday to Friday and assist their parents with chores on the weekends. Men engage in casual labor, hiring themselves out to local construction projects. Others run small business like motorbike taxiing or hawking goods.

The terrain of Mukhuyu is fairly rugged with rocks, while another part is swampy.

Water Situation

The main water source in Mukhuyu Community is Shikhanga Spring. The spring serves over 25 households for drinking and domestic uses, totaling about 200 users.

The spring is open, hence exposed to sources of contamination. Waste and garbage is washed into the water during rains, and wild animals are free to come and go as they please.

Community members have fixed a metal pipe in the spring to help them collect water. According to Celina Muteisi, the spring has existed for over 15 years and has never dried up, even during the driest seasons. “We have been drinking this water for a long time, thinking that this water is clean, especially the water collected early in the morning, but it has not been so. Majority of our community members have been complaining of stomachache while others complain of headache,” said Celina.

Sanitation Situation

Sanitation facilities in this community are in very poor condition and threaten their users. The fear children and the elderly have of falling into the latrines is so real that many of them opt for the privacy of bushes. A few households even encourage young children to urinate behind the kitchen for fear of them falling into the latrines. This further propels the unhygienic conditions in this community. Few people in this community actually own a pit latrine, instead just sharing with their neighbors or going outside.

Hygiene practices in the community are poor, as most locals do not wash their hands after visiting pit latrines. Compounds are dirty with garbage thrown everywhere. Bathing shelters are not common, with the available ones made of tree branches while others are made of used sacks and mosquito nets.

Dish racks and clothesline are rarely seen, with the community just drying their clothes on the ground or on bushes around their home.

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

Protecting the spring will ensure that its water is safe, adequate and secure. Construction will keep surface runoff and other contaminants out of the water. By volunteering as unskilled laborers, attending trainings, and providing food and accommodation for the skilled artisan, community members confirm their investment in the sustainable management and maintenance of the project upon completion.

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.

Project Updates

11/29/2017: Mukhuyu Community Project Complete

Shikhanga Spring in Mukhuyu 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 called a community leader, Celina, to arrange hygiene and sanitation training. She also went house to house inviting everyone to attend. Since Mukhuyu is such a religious community, we scheduled training during the weekdays because they spend the majority of the weekend at worship events.

Mr. Charles Shikhanga hosted the training at his home, since he lives closest to the spring. Training was attended by a total of 16 community members; of which five were male and 11 were female. There tends to be more women at trainings, since women are looked to as most responsible for water, sanitation and hygiene at the household level.

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 enjoying getting their hands involved. We did this with hand-washing, teaching the 10 steps of washing with soap and running water. And since we were already by the spring, we were able to teach about proper spring use, management, and simple maintenance.

Community members learning about how spring protection works and how to best care for it.

Mr. Pius Lukulu said “I am very grateful for taking your time to teach us many issues that we have been taking lightly. It’s like you have lit a candle, and now the candle is to keep on lighting.”

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.

Beneficiaries stand on their solid sanitation platform. They will build walls and a roof over the next days.

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.

A man delivers bricks to the construction site.

The spring area was excavated to create space for setting the foundation of polyethylene, wire mesh and concrete. After the base had been set, both wing walls and the headwall 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.

Building up the wall with bricks that will later be plastered with cement.

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 polyethylene membrane to eliminate any potential sources of contamination. Community members then helped us plant grass and dig cutoff drains to direct surface water away from the spring box.

There was a slight challenge with a disagreement between two of the closest landowners. One of the men refused to have stairs built on the right side of the spring since he claimed it was too close to his property, even though it was the most convenient side for stair construction. To appease that man, the artisan had to excavate into a hill to build the stairs on the opposite side. We’re grateful for our staff who mitigated this issue, and for our hardworking artisan.

This process has transformed Shikhanga Spring into a clean water source. People gathered to celebrate this transformation and fetch their first buckets of clean water. Mrs. Judith Mukovi is a primary teacher at a local school who joined other members of her community to celebrate. “I lack words to express my happiness. The outward appearance of the spring itself shows that indeed we are accessing clean water, unlike before where you could find maize combs and sugarcane pieces on top of the water source, indicating contamination.” Mukhungu Community is filled with hope as they look to a healthier future that allows them to accomplish more than they ever have.

The Water Project : 14-kenya4740-clean-water

10/23/2017: Mukhuyu Community Project Underway

Mukhuyu Community will soon have a clean, safe source of water thanks to your donation. Community members have been drinking contaminated water from Shikhanga 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 : 4-kenya4740-fetching-water

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!


St. Mary Catholic Church Altar Rosary Society
North Warren Regional School District
Bounce Treatment Services
9 individual donor(s)