Ebukanga Primary School Project Complete

August 31, 2017
H2o update 591
Ebukanga Primary School in Kenya now has a new source of safe, clean water. A new rainwater catchment system has been built, and there are now six new latrines being used. Two hand-washing stations have been installed, and the entire student body has received training in sanitation and hygiene. Just imagine the difference these resources will make in the lives of these children!

The report below from our partner gives the latest details of the project.

Project Result: New Knowledge

We worked with the headteacher to organize for hygiene and sanitation training. She selected teachers and student leaders to represent the school and two parents to represent parents. She also opted to have desks and chairs brought outside so as to not interrupt any regularly scheduled classes. The participants, especially the students, actively participated and asked a lot of questions.

We did a project nearby at Andebe Spring, where we learned that drug abuse is a huge issue plaguing Ebukanga. This topic was an addition to our regular training.

We taught an entire lesson on management and maintenance of the new tank and latrine facilities. Regular checking and cleaning of the gutter system is a must! It’s also important to treat the water while it is still in the tank. We also covered topics including but not limited to:

– Water pollution and water treatment

– Personal and environmental hygiene

– Group dynamics, leadership, and governance

– Forming an effective CTC (child to child) club

– Hand-washing

We used a number of different ways to teach the above topics, while demonstrations were used for hand-washing and tooth-brushing. We facilitated group discussions and presentations. The students also received handouts which will help them teach hygiene and sanitation to their peers.

The CTC club will include both students and teachers who want to take responsibility for spreading the message of good health and hygiene among their peers. They will also be responsible for taking care of the new hand-washing stations, making sure they are always filled with water and that a cleaning agent like soap or ash is available. A water user committee has also been formed by parents and school administration, which will be responsible for overseeing and maintaining the new facilities.

The CTC club has already started growing since the training – The members are cleaning their classrooms and meeting together regularly. Teacher Solomon Omole said, “We are lucky to have received this project and we are lucky to have got this knowledge. I’m glad that I was selected to be one of the participants! What we have learned here is very important in life; let us practice it and I assure you that Ebukanga Community is destined for greatness!”

Project Result: Hand-Washing Stations

The two hand-washing stations were delivered to school and handed over to the CTC club. They will teach other students how to properly wash their hands at these stations, and will make sure there is always soap or ash available. Now the school has the stations they need, and they have the water to fill them!

Project Result: VIP Latrines

This project funded the installation of six new VIP (ventilated improved pit) latrines. These latrines are easy to use and easy to clean. And with a rainwater catchment tank, there should be enough water to keep them clean all the time!

Project Result: Rainwater Catchment Tank

Construction for this 50,000-liter rainwater catchment tank began at the end of June.

Parents, staff, and students helped our artisans gather everything needed for construction. All the while, women cooked meals for the artisans, and the school provided accommodations for the artisans during their work.

Rainwater tank construction began with clearance of the site: excavating the soil within the required measurements to make level ground for the tank foundation. The foundation was cast by laying hardcore on a level ground and then reinforcing it using steel, concrete and waterproof cement.

As the foundation was being lain, both the drawing pipe as well as the washout pipe were affixed. The wall was built with ferro-cement techniques through six layers. The inner wall was plastered while rough casting was done on the outer part.

After the superstructure had been given enough time to settle, the dome followed. The manhole cover was fitted, inlet pipes were connected to the roof gutters, inlet screens, ventilation pipes (breathers) and overflow pipes were all done to standards.

Finally, the catchment area was done by building a staircase. Drainage was set up there, and then the tank was allowed 14 days to undergo complete curing before it was cleaned and handed over to Ebukanga Primary School. It already has some water in it!

The 4k agricultural club has also been blessed by this project. Before, the school just had that 3,000-liter plastic tank used for drinking. If the club wanted to water their seedlings, they had no choice but to go out and fetch enough water elsewhere.

Now, the new 50,000-liter cement tank is used for drinking, cooking, and cleaning while the old plastic tank has been given to the agricultural club! Many new members have joined the 4K club – some shied away from it before because they didn’t want to have to undertake fetching irrigation water. The CTC club has joined the 4K club to work together for sustainability. “We were advised to join the agricultural club since tree-planting was the most viable project in this school and this area. We need money for doing repair works to our new facilities, and that is why we had to crack our heads to get the most realistic project ideas… We have given our registration fees to the club and we are part of whatever they are doing, and the proceeds from sale of seedlings will be divided equally so that half of the money is saved in the CTC account and half goes to the agriculture club’s account to ensure both projects are sustainable,” explained Amuko, the CTC president.

Mother Nancy Muholo now has confidence her child has clean water both at school and home. “I believe having water in school will lead to improved performance. Indeed you have saved Ebukanga Community by doing a project at Andebe, doing another one at Ebukanga Secondary, and now we have our newest project in the village at Ebukanga Primary. You came here with a solution, thank you!” she exclaimed.

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