Luvambo Well Rehabilitation Project

Regional Program:
Western Kenya WaSH Program

Latitude 0.51
Longitude 34.79

200 Served

Project Status:

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Stories and 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

Luvambo Community rests on rocky land between two other communities, Mahusi and Namushiya. The huge stones dotting this area make it almost impossible to farm anything. To take advantage of this situation, community members earn money by breaking the stones and selling them to construction companies. This is the daily work done by men. Women are engaged in small business such as selling vegetables and bananas in the nearby shopping center, or just focus on doing household chores and taking care of the children.

The children attend the local public primary school. Most community members are Christians who belong to different denominations such as Seventh Day Adventist, Friends Church Quakers and Pentecostal Assembles of God.

Water Situation

Since men are the primary breadwinners, women are those most responsible for fetching water. This community does not have a local water source, so women and children are forced to leave the village in search of water. There are two springs that women and children frequent, one protected and one unprotected. An unprotected spring is in its natural state, but a protected spring has a discharge pipe and catchment area that protect the water from contaminants. Unfortunately, this protected spring is a lengthy walk. It’s over two kilometers away! But if a family needs drinking water, this is the only place to go, since the unprotected spring is open to contaminants that are washed into the water during rains.

Once delivered back home, water is poured from the plastic jerrycan into a covered clay pot and reserved for drinking. Any remainder is left in the fetching container and used for domestic chores. If the water is visibly contaminated, a mother will filter out that dirt before serving it to her family. Filtering or not, community members commonly suffer from typhoid and diarrhea. Julius Shikuku told us, “My grandchildren are often taken to the nearby dispensary for vomiting and diarrhea.”

Sanitation Situation

Around half of households in Luvambo Community have a pit latrine. These are made of mud and floored with wooden slats. Not many families have a bathing room for practicing personal hygiene, while a few more have helpful tools such as dish racks and clotheslines. We couldn’t find anywhere for hand-washing.

Plans: Hygiene and Sanitation Training

Community members will be trained for two days on applicable hygiene and sanitation practices. The facilitator will use the PHAST (Participatory Hygiene and Sanitation Training) method to teach about topics like:

– Proper water storage and treatment

– How to build a hand-washing station and how to use it

– Proper food preparation and storage

– Waste disposal

– How disease is spread and how to block its transmission

We also plan to supplement the “DIY hand-washing stations” with two of our own more permanent solutions that come in the form of water taps on metal stands. These two stations will be delivered to the well location so that locals can wash their hands before using the pump. Training will also result in the formation of a water user committee which will oversee, manage, and maintain the rehabilitated well.

Plans: Well Rehabilitation

The well that we plan to rehabilitate is currently not in use, and is thus covered with a stone slab. This well was installed by the Kenya Finland Company in 1987, but became non-functional so long ago that nobody remembers quite what happened. The pump is missing, and there’s no way for community members to access the water inside. We measured that the well has a total depth of 8.4 meters and a static water level of 3.9 meters.

Since the well has been unprotected by a well pad, it will require extensive cleaning. We will have to lower someone to clear out garbage and waste that has been washed in during the rains. A well pad will need to be constructed with cement so a new AfriDev pump can be installed. Right before installing the full pump, we will test pump to estimate the expected yield.

The rehabilitation of this old water source will bring clean water back to the community. Women and children waste a lot of valuable time trekking to and from the springs to fetch water that is easily contaminated on the way back home. We anticipate that with a well that yields safe drinking water, cases of typhoid and diarrhea will drastically decrease. People will not only have the extra time to work, but will also be healthy enough to work towards improving life in Luvambo.

Project Photos

Recent Project Updates

12/14/2017: A Year Later: Luvambo Community

A year ago, generous donors helped rehabilitate a well and build handwashing stations for the Luvambo 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 from partner, Paul Weringa, with you.

The Water Project : yar_4537_1

10/06/2016: Luvambo Well Rehabilitation Project Complete

We are excited to share that the rehabilitated well in Luvambo Community is now providing clean water. Hygiene and sanitation training was conducted in the community, which invited all locals to learn about practices like washing hands and using latrines. Two hand-washing stations were delivered upon the well’s completion. This water and new knowledge give the community a great foothold in eliminating water and sanitation-related illness! Please enjoy this update detailing all the work that was done in Luvambo Community, and make sure to click on the “See Photos & Video” tab above to find new pictures of the finished project.

Thank You for unlocking potential for these people. You made clean water a reality, and now you have a chance to make sure it keeps flowing. Now, you also have the opportunity to join our team of monthly donors who help us maintain this well and hundreds of other projects!

Project Result: New Knowledge

Hygiene and sanitation training was held outside in the center of the village. Chairs and a table were brought outside for the facilitator and participants. At least one representative of each household was invited to attend. Both men and women actively participated in each lesson, and asked lots of questions.

We focused on the role of the community once the well rehabilitation project is handed over to them. Training participants will form a water user committee that is responsible for overseeing and maintaining the well. We want locals to feel that the water system belongs to them so that they will keep it clean and use it with care.

7 kenya4537 training

We used illustrations to help teach the difference between a good and bad hygiene practice. By the end of our discussions, community members were able to discern between the two. Most importantly, everyone now understands the reason it is so important to choose good hygiene practices over bad. We taught about the disease transmission route by making connections between everyday habits. Where do people use the restroom? Where do they store food? Are flies not attracted to both? Last but not least, we demonstrated the proper way to wash hands. This is the simplest and most effective way to stop the transmission of disease. Each participant had a chance to practice with a partner!

The chairman of the water user committee piped up at the end of training to encourage the other participants. “I urge all of you to follow this training, especially the hand-washing exercise in order to reduce waterborne diseases. And the sanitation facilities need to be taken seriously!”

11 kenya4537 training

Project Result: Hand-Washing Stations

Two hand-washing stations were delivered by the time the well rehabilitation was complete. These come in the form of plastic buckets raised on metal stands and fitted with taps. Training participants learned how to properly wash hands and will be able to teach their families and neighbors to follow suit. The same committee responsible for the water well will make sure the stations are filled with clean water on a daily basis, and that a cleaning agent like soap or ash is available.

40 kenya4537 handing over

Project Result: Well Rehabilitation

Construction for this well rehabilitation began on September 20th.

This began with building a good foundation, since the existing well pad was old and cracked. We also took off the well cover in order to even out the edges. We want there to be a tight fit for the pump so that no contaminants can reach water inside. The well pad was plastered with a mix of regular cement and waterproof cement. After several days of drying, we developed the well with an air compressor. This cleaned it out so that we could test pump for the yield. The yield proved good, so we approved the installation of PVC pipes, rods, plunger, and then the rest of the new AfriDev pump.

28 kenya4537 pump installation

The community helped a lot by gathering sand, bricks, ballast, and other tools to be used by our artisans. They also gathered around as we undertook the project and offered a helping hand when needed. The local women also prepared food for our team.

There were no specific challenges with construction, but rainy weather often interrupted our work.

31 kenya4537 pump installation

The water user committee chairman once again encouraged his community, this time leading them in celebration. When the well was finished, Mr. Shikuku and the rest of his committee gathered at the site to express their thankfulness. Mr. Shikuku said, “We are grateful to have our water point back in place. This will help us improve on hygiene and sanitation for the upcoming generation.” Everyone is so relieved to no longer have to walk long distances and waste time searching for water. It’s at their doorstep!

The Water Project : 37-kenya4537-handing-over

09/08/2016: Luvambo Well Rehabilitation Project Underway

We are excited to announce that, thanks to your willingness to help, Luvambo Community in Kenya will soon have a new source of safe, clean water. A broken well is being rehabilitated so it will be a protected, safe source of water, and the community will receive training in sanitation and hygiene. They will also receive two new hand-washing stations, and be encouraged to build their own. Together these resources will help stop the spread of disease in the area. We just posted a report including an introduction to the community, GPS coordinates, and pictures. We will keep you posted as work continues.

Click on the tabs above to find out more, and Thank You for your generous help!

The Water Project : 8-kenya4537-well-for-rehabilitation

Monitoring Data

Project Type:  Dug Well and Hand Pump
Location:  Kakamega, Luvambo
ProjectID: 4537
Install Date:  10/06/2016

Monitoring Data
Water Point:
Last Visit: 03/08/2018

Visit History:
04/03/2017 — Functional
06/20/2017 — Functional
09/19/2017 — Functional
02/20/2018 — Functional
03/08/2018 — Functional

A Year Later: Luvambo Community

September, 2017

“We used to walk 2 km or more for search of clean water. Women complained of chest and back pains, a result of carrying heavy buckets on our heads and walking long distances. Today, our women and children are stronger and no more complains.”

A year ago, generous donors helped rehabilitate a well and build handwashing stations for the Luvambo 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 from partner, Paul Weringa, with you.


The community has experienced great change since the well has been rehabilitated. Washing and cleaning has become an easy task to women in this community. This is because the distance to the rehabilitated borehole is reduced by a kilometer to most of the community households. Initially, women and children had to walk more than 2km in search of clean water. Because clean water is closer to their homes, women have enough time to do other chores like preparing meals to their school going children and also do some farming activities.

Truphena Wanyonyi, a female community member remembers what life was like before the water project was completed. “We used to walk 2 km or more for search of clean water. Women complained of chest and back pains, a result of carrying heavy buckets on our heads and walking long distances. Today, our women and children are stronger and no more complains.”


“Typhoid and diarrhea used to be our own diseases,” Truphena continues. “We didn’t know that one day, we will be free from this outbreak and save our little money for other important life issues. Today, we have minimal cases of typhoid and diarrhea. I also don’t need to plan when I do my cleaning. I do it when I feel like doing it because water is within my reach.”

Diana Kasiti, age 7, remembers being sick before too. “When I used to drink water from the stream, I would have diarrhea every time. I do not experience that anymore.”


We will continue to monitor this project to ensure that it is sustainable. We will also engage the water user committee, with community involvement, to build a fence around the borehole.

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 four times a year. Read more about our program and how you can help.


Country Details


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

Partner Profile

Safe Water & Sustainable Hygiene Initiative (SAWASHI) provides safe, affordable and sustainable water supply services through rehabilitation of boreholes, strengthening of Water User Committees, WaSH training of target beneficiary communities and monitoring & evaluation of water systems.