Project Status

Project Type:  Dug Well and Hand Pump

Regional Program: Western Kenya WaSH Program

Impact: 150 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Jul 2016

Functionality Status:  Functional

Last Checkup: 02/07/2024

Project Features

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Community Profile

This project is a part of our shared program with Safe Water and Sustainable Hygiene Initiative (SAWASHI). Our team is pleased to directly share the below report (edited for clarity, as needed).

Welcome to the Community

Matsakha A Community is surrounded by sugarcane plantation farms on all sides. The community's farmers also plant short-seasoned crops such as beans, maize, potatoes and other kinds of vegetables. Matsakha A is home to 150 people from 15 different households. Both men and women are the breadwinners for their families. Most of the people are Christians who attend churches of different denominations such as Friends Church Quakers, Impact, and Deliverance Church. Most children in this community get their education in a public primary school called Matsakha Primary.

Due to alcoholism, a large number of men have abandoned there responsibilities as fathers and breadwinners, therefore making it difficult for many mothers to carry all the household responsibility. To ensure that their families are well-taken care of, women are therefore forced to engage in many different activities including small business and manual labor for which they are payed poorly. Overall, the living standards of people in this community is poor.

Water Situation

Kenya Finland Company approached Matsakha A Community to dig a hand-dug well in 1985. A few years later, the pump was stolen and most likely sold in parts. To take advantage of the water inside, community members soon after decided to tie a bucket to the end of a rope to replace the pump. Over 20 years later, this method of fetching water and an old, broken well pad are allowing a high level of contamination to reach the well's water. Community members often complain of typhoid and diarrhea as a result of drinking this dirty water.

Sanitation Situation

Most households have dug a pit latrine made of mud and banana leaves, cloth, or iron sheets for doors. No more than half of families have a dedicated room for personal hygiene; for activities such as teeth-brushing or bathing. At least half of women have a clothesline and dish rack to dry their family's things. Everyone disposes of their garbage in the surrounding fields and plantations. It's apparent that some families have heard about good hygiene and sanitation practices, since they have a few good facilities. However, many still need to learn and be encouraged to take important steps in improving their health. Many tools are cheap and accessible even to the poorest of families. Just one family practicing an unhealthy lifestyle can spread disease in a tight-knit community. Farmer Jackton Kisembe says that "due to poor hygiene and sanitation practices in our community, the outbreaks of waterborne diseases have become rampant. This has affected our livelihood, since a lot of money is spent on medical bills."

Plans: Hygiene and Sanitation Training

All members of the community will be invited to three days of hygiene and sanitation training. The facilitator will use the PHAST (Participatory Hygiene and Sanitation Training) method to teach the following topics and more:

  • Proper water storage and treatment
  • Disease transmission
  • Personal and household hygiene
  • Proper waste disposal
  • Proper food preparation and storage
  • Building a strong water user committee

The facilitator also plans to take participants on a transect walk to identify and analyze practices among households. They will label what is detrimental or helpful to good health, and will brainstorm how to improve conditions. The water user committee will be tasked with overseeing and managing the rehabilitated well.

Plans: Well Rehabilitation and Hand-Washing Stations

The water point is a hand-dug well with culvert lining in it. It has a total depth of 8.7 meters and has a static water level of 3.4 meters. The well pad has cracks and dismantled edges. There is no pump in place on this well, but only a well cover. The well is littered by pieces of sticks, plastic bags, containers, and sugarcane cuttings. Someone will have to be lowered into the well to clear it out, and the well pad will have to be entirely demolished so a new one can be built. Once the new pad cures, a new Afridev pump will be installed.

Two hand-washing stations will be delivered in time for training so that they can be used for demonstrations and practice. The community will be taught how to fill and clean the containers.

The community's chief has been pivotal in the start of this project. He sent us the application for rehabilitation and invited us to see the well and community firsthand. He has informed the entire community of upcoming training and construction efforts. He and all the local leadership have promised to help with any needs that may arise during the course of this water project.

Project Updates

December, 2017: A Year Later: Matsakha A Community

A year ago, generous donors helped rehabilitate a well for Matsakha Community in Kenya. Because of these gifts and our monthly donors, partners are able to visit project sites throughout the year, strengthening relationships with communities and evaluating the actual water project. These consistent visits allow us to learn vital lessons and hear amazing stories – we’re excited to share this one with you.

Project Photos

Project Type

Hand-dug wells have been an important source of water throughout human history! Now, we have so many different types of water sources, but hand-dug wells still have their place. Hand dug wells are not as deep as borehole wells, and work best in areas where there is a ready supply of water just under the surface of the ground, such as next to a mature sand dam. Our artisans dig down through the layers of the ground and then line the hole with bricks, stone, or concrete, which prevent contamination and collapse. Then, back up at surface level, we install a well platform and a hand pump so people can draw up the water easily.

A Year Later: Matsakha A Community

September, 2017

“The families are now able to produce more harvests from their farms since they have the strength to plough their farms.”

Keeping The Water Promise

There's an incredible community of monthly donors who have come alongside you in supporting clean water in Matsakha A Community Well Rehabilitation Project.

This giving community supports ongoing sustainability programs that help Matsakha A Community Well Rehabilitation Project 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 rehabilitate a well for Matsakha Community in Kenya. Because of these gifts and our monthly donors, partners are able to visit project sites throughout the year, strengthening relationships with communities and evaluating the actual water project. These consistent visits allow us to learn vital lessons and hear amazing stories - we're excited to share this one with you.

When we think about providing clean water, the first thing that often come to mind is having safe water to drink. And certainly that is utterly important. But a year after rehabilitating the well at Matsakha, WASH officer Paul Weringa observed the incredible breadth of impact that access to water can bring. Cases of waterborne diseases have definitely reduced, but Paul also noted, "Men and women spent their good time in their small farms unlike before when much time was spent in the hospitals and dispensaries seeking medical for the treatment of diarrhea, typhoid, stomach ache and skin diseases in children. The families are now able to produce more harvests from their farms since they have the strength to plough their farms."

4527 YAR 2

Twenty-two year old student and farmer Joshua Simiyu said, "By the fact that the well is located in our land, I am able to irrigate my vegetable gardens during dry seasons. In the past dry season, I was able to make some money out of the vegetables that I planted and irrigated by use of water from this source."

Community member and chairman Joseph Mulongo shared, "For a long time, our wives complained of chest and back pains. This was as a result of pulling the rope tied on the bucket. There is a relieve for them since the pump was installed on the well… It’s become easier for me to water my animals since it’s easier to fetch water. Earlier before, I avoided fetching water for the livestock and letting my wife do the work. The production of milk is good. I am now able to sell the milk and take care of my family."

4527 YAR 3

Healthy bodies, healthy livestock, and productive farms.  All of this is the result of access to safe, clean water!

Paul and Joseph both noted that there is still room for improvement in Matsakha. Some community members are still reluctant to contribute to the well’s maintenance and repair fund, an important part of sustaining this well. Our partner will continue working with the community to understand this critical need.


The Water Project and our partners are committed to consistent monitoring of each water source. Our monitoring and evaluation program, made possible by monthly donors, allows us to visit communities up to 4 times a year. Read more about our program 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 Matsakha A Community Well Rehabilitation Project 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 Matsakha A Community Well Rehabilitation Project – 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.