Mtambo Borehole Rehabilitation Project

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IcFEM Water Projects

Latitude 0.70
Longitude 34.60

500 Served

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Stories and Community Profile

This project is part of IcFEM’s WaSH program, which includes multiple water source schemes as well as substantial community level hygiene promotion, and training on project operation and maintenance. 

What follows is a brief project outline direct from our partner: 

Mtambo borehole is located in Lwanda village, Bungoma West District of Bungoma County. The area is mainly occupied by small scale and large scale farmers who grow sugarcane for commercial purposes. Other crops grown in the area include maize, bananas, sunflower, beans and local vegetables.

Despite the high amounts of rainfall (between 1,300mm to 1,800mm per annum) and the huge agricultural potential, a significant portion of the populace in that area are poor as a result of high population growth, low levels of literacy and lack of capital for investment.

Mtambo borehole just like many others in the area was built by KEFINCO in 1978 to provide clean and safe drinking water to the locals who relied on water from rivers. This made them prone to water borne diseases.

However, at the time of our intervention, the site was in deplorable state. The pump broke down and was vandalised (some parts were removed). Members of the community drew water from the borehole using a little container tied to a rope. This was a potential health risk as the cleanliness of the container and the rope could not be guaranteed. The alternative source of water was the risky seasonal river in the area which is 3 kilometres away.

Among the reasons given by the community for the poor state of the site include poor management and an ineffective water management committee that was not properly empowered.

A new committee has now been set up and trained on its responsibilities to ensure sustainability. The community has agreed to work with the Mission and rehabilitate the site to solve the perennial water problem in the area and minimise the risk of infections. 

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Recent Project Updates

10/30/2013: Mtambo Borehole Repaired and Refreshing!

We are excited to report that the Mtambo borehole, which we recently told you had broken even after being rehabilitated, has been repaired, and is once again supplying safe, clean water to the community.  See the report below from our partner in the field to learn the details of this projects’s current status.  And Thank You for your help!

Project Description and Status

Mtambo borehole is found in Lwanda village, Bungoma West District of Bungoma County. The borehole has an interesting history attached to it because it was built by KEFINCO in 1978 as a reward to one of its longstanding employee Felix Nabangi. It is actually built in his compound but he says this was because other people refused to have it dug on their land fearing that this was a ploy to grab their land.

A committee was instituted but was never trained on how to manage the site. This was the genesis of problems for the borehole. The pump broke down many times and finally the committee gave up repairing it in 1995.

The project was then identified for rehabilitation by the community of IcFEM Nalondo Local Transformation Unit in January 2012. Before the rehabilitation was done, a new committee was chosen by the community and trained on site management, repair and maintenance. The work of refurbishment was then done by Bridgewater (Kakamega) in February 2013. The borehole was handed over to the community in March 2013.

The community is happy with the project because they no longer have to draw water from the borehole using little containers tied to a rope, which posed numerous health risk to them. Women also acknowledge that they do not waste a lot of time going to the seasonal river 3 kilometres away.


Since its completion in February, the pump has broken down twice and the committee does not seem to act quickly to repair the pump. There have also been reports of sabotage by some committee members who take money from residents in order to fetch water for them at the expense of the borehole kitty. Felix has sometimes had to repair the pump on his own then collect money from users to recover his costs. 

Way Forward

To ensure sustainability, the Mission has proposed that the Nalondo Local Transformation Unit leadership organizes a meeting with all residents and the provincial administration to educate the community about the importance of taking care of the site and the technical means to do so. 

The Water Project : kenya4137-12

10/04/2013: Update On Mtambo

If you look at the project report page for Mtambo, you will see pictures of a fully repaired, functioning well.  By mid June, this project was completed, and the community began using their new source of clean water.  When a couple our staff visited this site later in June, we were disappointed to learn that a part of the well, the one shown in the picture below, had broken and it was no longer in operation.  Our partner is actively working to repair this well, and discover why the hardware failed so quickly.  The challenges of bringing clean water are ever present, but we are committed to working through them together.  We’ll let you know as soon as this is resolved.  Thank You!

The Water Project : sanyo-digital-camera-6

03/20/2013: Progress At Mtambo

Work is continuing to restore the broken well at Mtambo.  See the new pictures we just added.  We’ll keep you posted as the work continues.

The Water Project : sanyo-digital-camera-10

02/25/2013: Mtambo Project Underway

After facing an issue in a prior community, we are excited to report that work has begun to restore the Mtambo well in the village of Lwanda, Kenya.  We just posted an initial report from our partner in the field including information about the community, GPS coordinates, and pictures.

The Water Project : kenya4137mtambo_1-2

Project Data

Project Type:  Well Rehab
Location:  Lwanda Village, Bungoma West District, Bungoma County, Kenya
ProjectID: 4137
Install Date:  10/30/2013


6 individual donors
Forest Hill Elementary School
School District of Kettle Moraine/Michelle Weber

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Country Details


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

Partner Profile

IcFEM is an indigenous Kenyan organization based in Kimilili, Western Kenya with a mission of smooth integration of community development, evangelism and innovative provision of holistic care. IcFEM aims at building people, especially in rural areas, both spiritually and practically to become self supporting.