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The Water Project : 4-kenya4851-training
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The Water Project : 11-kenya4851-latrine-floor
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The Water Project : 1-kenya4851-omasaba-spring

Location: Kenya

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 320 Served

Project Phase:  Installed

Functionality Status:  Functional



Community Profile & Stories

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

Mr. Christopher Omasaba and his family own the land that “Christopher Omasaba Spring” runs through. This family leads a life that can depict what a normal day in Ebuhando Community looks like for most. Every morning, children wake up to do dishes before they leave for school, while the elderly like Mrs. and Mrs. Omasaba sweep their compound with thick banana tree stalks. Christopher’s daughter, Miss Christine Sayo, will start her day thinking how to better her tailoring school to attract more clients.

The rest of the family attends to the needs of domesticated animals such as poultry and cows before leaving to work on their farm.

Besides bananas, there are also maize crops grown for subsistence purposes and a few yams planted on wet portions of the land.

Mr. Christopher and his wife are enjoying their old age together with renewed love. “I was married to my dear husband in 1952 and for the last 65 years God has been good to both of us. We have enjoyed our marriage, celebrated our youth and now we are living in our bonuses together,” she said. Both of them are physically active, alert in the mind and indeed so friendly. They both make and receive phone calls with much ease. Their eyes can still locate a needle dropped onto the ground. And they walk around and I guess they can dance too, if country songs played in their youth are played again.

He also applied for the spring to be protected and used by his fellow community members.

Water Situation

Christopher Omasaba Spring was discovered in 1960 by Mr. Omasaba himself. He settled there because he and his family needed water for drinking, cooking, cleaning, and watering crops and animals. Immediately after they built their home, more families were attracted to this area for the same reason. Now, there are 37 households who all rely on Christopher Omasaba Spring.

They’ve placed a plastic pipe to help funnel the water into containers. The water is dirty, as the spring is unprotected and vulnerable to many different contaminants. There are farms that use fertilizers and chemicals in close proximity. When it rains, those substances and many others are washed to the water that flows through the plastic pipe.

The spring users also report that fetching water is a dangerous task because of the terrain. They say that sliding and falling is just an inevitable fact of fetching water.

Community members report that Christopher Omasaba Spring’s is especially dirty during the dry season, when even more people from neighboring communities bustle about to fetch water, since their own water sources dried up.

Sanitation Situation

Ebuhando Community has done well with what they’ve been given. The majority of homes have a pit latrine, and most of those are clean and well maintained. They even clean the floors and pits with ash to deodorize and keep flies away.

However, there are no hand-washing stations for after using the latrine or before eating. Some households are also still lacking simple yet helpful sanitation tool like dish racks and clotheslines.

People are hopeful and ready to learn, though. As we visited their homes, they were able to demonstrate what they had already put in place to help keep their homes clean. For example, most people have built good pens to keep their animals in overnight. They’re eager to learn about what else they can do, too!

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 latrine floors.

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 the water is safe, adequate and secure. Construction will keep surface runoff and other contaminants out of the water.

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.

As we left, Mr. Christopher Omasaba told us, “I am confident that the current initiative will see the light of day because the community has suffered for so long because of water shortages. I will ensure that this spring is protected and that it is well maintained so that my formative dream of making villagers access safe drinking water is realized during my lifetime…”


Recent Project Updates


12/18/2017: Ebuhando Community Project Complete

Christopher Omasaba Spring in Ebuhando 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

Our contact person for this community was Mrs. Christine Sayo. Through her, we were able to reach most of the people living here to invite them to hygiene and sanitation training. We met at Mr. Christopher Omsaba’s homestead, and attendance was good even though it was the election season.

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.

Training on solar disinfection of water

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 near the spring, we were able to teach about proper spring use, management, and simple maintenance. After training, the children gathered together and did their first thorough cleaning of the spring protection, just as they were taught.

Children practicing cleaning the spring the way they were taught during training.

36-year-old farmer Zaphania Onyine said, “You made us know how to live healthy well. We will do what we can to kick waterborne diseases and diseases associated with poor hygiene. The talk about agri-business also helped a great deal; there are three people who have started it and they promised to help the rest get started.”

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.

Casting the sanitation platform as it’s still in the mold.

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 we asked a few people to volunteer their time and strength to help the artisan with manual labor.

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.

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.

Men building a fence to protect the spring box area behind the discharge pipe.

This process has transformed Christopher Omasaba Spring into a clean water source, whereafter people immediately gathered to fetch their first containers of clean water. They were so proud of the transformation that they stuck around just to admire the construction. When we arrived to take completion pictures, someone told us “There has already been a great education on treatment of diseases that are waterborne as well as those caused by staying in a dirty environment. We now see the benefits of treating water before drinking it. My wife boils the water and puts it in a clean container that is well covered.”

A little girl rinses out her container before filling it with clean water from the spring.

Two local men have already decided to become water vendors – they’ve bought ten 20-liter jerrycans and a cart to help them sell clean water to different hotels in the area. These men and the rest of their community are overjoyed by the transformations they’ve already seen in Ebuhando, and feel empowered to seize this unlocked potential. Mrs. Catherine Ayuma said, “We are very glad to have been given the opportunity of having our spring protected. This has enabled us to have clean and safe water, which makes us safe from waterborne diseases like diarrhea. We have put measures to ensure that this spring will serve us for long.”


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10/23/2017: Ebuhando Community Project Underway

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


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Explore More of The Project

Project Photos


Monitoring Data


Project Type:  Protected Spring
Location:  Vihiga, Luanda, Mabungo, Ebuhando
ProjectID: 4851
Install Date:  12/15/2017

Monitoring Data
Water Point:
Functional - New Project




Contributors

St. Marks Presbyterian
Carmel High School
1 individual donor(s)


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Country Details

Kenya

Population: 39.8 Million
Lacking clean water: 43%
Below poverty line: 50%

Partner Profile

Western Water and Sanitation Forum (WEWASAFO) works together with less privileged and marginalized members of communities in Western Kenya to reduce poverty through harnessing and utilization of local resources for sustainable development.