Dear Kenya Rainwater Association Supporters,
This update contains some very exciting news about the GlobalGiving-supported KRA Matuiku Primary School water project. The latrines are now complete and operational! The final handing-over ceremony took place last weekend and the children were very excited! In addition, the base for the rainwater harvesting tank is now complete and the tree-planting and de-worming activities with AAR Health Insurance have been a big success. Read on for more detail and photos...
Construction work on the ventilated improved pit (VIP) latrines began in February of this year. There are four latrines for girls and two for the teachers. The boys already had fairly good standard latrines. The latrines have a special vent pipe which prevents build-up of odour and reduces flies and mosquitoes. Built securely with concrete and designed to be very private, they are far better than the typical wooden door latrines with pits that can collapse at any time.
Girls in rural areas often miss school for up to four days per month in Kenya due to unsuitable latrine facilities and lack of privacy (mixed latrines). These new latrines at Matuiku will ensure girls feel comfortable coming to school throughout the year and are able to focus on their school-work.
You may remember the kind donation of a 10,000-litre water tank from Tile and Carpet Centre Ltd. last year. Well, KRA have now built a solid concrete support to hold the tank with a tap for easy access to the water. This will ensure children can wash their hands and get water for drinking.
On 22 March, AAR Health Insurance fulfilled their promise and returned to Matuiku School to conduct the first tree-planting session. 150 trees were planted and the children were taught how to care for them. If all goes well, the next tree-planting session will take place in September! In addition, AAR provided a free de-worming service to 140 of the school children. De-worming at least every six months in Kenya is very important, particularly for young children.
The day for the final commissioning and handover of the school latrines and tank stand finally came on Saturday 26 May! The children gathered in the school grounds as the Projects Coordinator for KRA, Dr. Stephen Ngigi, announced that the latrines and stand were officially open. Technical Assistant, Ronald Kamadi, who has tirelessly managed the construction of the latrines, was also there at the event. The Headteacher, Mr. John Ndegwa, was visibly overjoyed, as were the children, particularly the girls!
To date, our GlobalGiving fundraising for Matuiku Primary School has raised $5,181. This is wonderful and has enabled us to fund the construction of the latrines and the tank base. The other activities we had hoped to do, were construction of a larger tank (50,000-litres) and a farm pond (50,000-litres) and drip irrigation system for vegetable growing. These activities will need to wait as we try to raise more funds (total to reach goal is another $12,000). However for now, rest assured that the situation at Matuiku Primary School is vastly improved and we will keep reporting back on how the children are doing.
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Information and Communication Officer