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 Health  Kenya Project #24977

Sondu Water Enterprise

Sondu Water Enterprise
Sondu Water Enterprise
Sondu Water Enterprise
Sondu Water Enterprise
Sondu Water Enterprise
Sondu Water Enterprise
Sondu Water Enterprise
Sondu Water Enterprise
Sondu Water Enterprise
Sondu Water Enterprise
Sondu Water Enterprise
Sondu Water Enterprise
Sondu Water Enterprise
Sondu Water Enterprise
Sondu Water Enterprise
Sondu Water Enterprise
Sondu Water Enterprise
Sondu Water Enterprise
Sondu Water Enterprise
Sondu Water Enterprise








Safe Water & AIDS Project (SWAP) uses an integrated entrepreneurial approach addressing a number of public health issues by working with already existing community structures. SWAP has been operating in Western Kenya since 2005 with public health programs and research contributing towards the achievement of sustainable development goals.

SWAP’s vision is to see a healthy and empowered community where everyone enjoys high quality of life.

SWAP’s mission is to provide innovative solutions for improved health and economic status of our communities.

Background Information

Sondu Water Enterprise is located at Sondu in Kisumu County, bordering Kericho, Nyamira and Homabay Counties in Western Kenya. The population residing in Sondu largely depend on the river source water for domestic use, which is highly turbid and contaminated. The river traverses three counties thus increasing contamination along its channel before emptying into Lake Victoria. Laboratory tests on microbiological quality have revealed that the source has high coliform count and fecal contamination.

There is a piped water scheme in the area which is not reliable and the supply is intermittent. Occasionally, the electricity supply is disconnected due to failure in settlement of the bills and due to drought there has been frequent rationing of water s

The Safe Water Enterprise was launched in July 2016. This was a collaborative initiative between Skyjuice Foundation (Australia) and Siemens Stiftung (Germany) in partnership with SWAP. Through this intervention the surrounding community members now have access to safe water, which has significantly reduced waterborne diseases such as diarrhea, cholera, typhoid and amoeba and as such reduced morbidity and mortality especially in children under five.

The Solution

The technology is Skyhydrant Filtration. Raw water is pumped from the river and collected in a water tank after which it is filtered through the membranes of the skyhydrant filtration unit.  It is then channeled to outlets and sold to the communities at an affordable rate.

The Sondu Water Enterprise

Hygiene Promotion is done by the Water Operator and trained community health promoters. SWAP established a public latrine on the premises with a hand washing unit to promote hygiene, since there was no toilet facility at the entire market place. Many traders and visitors were instead using the river.

Beneficiaries of the Sondu Water Enterprise

  • Traders at Sondu market
  • Water Vendors on motorcycle or handcart owners
  • School going children in nearby schools
  • Residents/tenants within Sondu and its surroundings
  • Patients at nearby health facilities

Several schools have used the enterprise for educational purpose to teach children and hygiene.Community health volunteers and the water operator apart from marketing the enterprise are engaged in health and hygiene promotion.

Recent Partnerships

Kenya Integrated Water, Sanitation and Hygiene -KIWASH – is a USAID funded program which has expressed interest to support Sondu water enterprise. The Water Operator and SWAP employee supervising the Sondu Water Enterprise participated in a training and together worked on a business plan which is shared with KIWASH. They will offer support and ongoing capacity building to help the Enterprise run more efficient towards sustainability in the near future.

Siemens – They assisted with seed funds and technical support for the initial start-up of the Sondu Water Enterprise and have paid regular visits and still offer technical support and maintenance on the technology. They further supported SWAP with some calendars and other incentives for the regular customers.

Kenya Water and Sanitation Network – KEWASNET – SWAP has been marketing its service through the KEWASNET newsletter, which has a country wide membership of WASH partners.

Kenya Water for Health Organization – KWAHO – KWAHO was engaged by Siemens to support the hygiene promotion and community mobilization to help market the Sondu Water Enterprise.

Way forward

SWAP is working with the Sondu authorities and the Sondu Water Enterprise Committee to eventually hand over ownership of the enterprise after it is sustainable. Last year was a difficult year due to insecurity in the area with the prolonged elections. In 2018 the service is on high demand due to the drought as a result of climate change, whereby people come from far to access the service.




Safe Water and AIDS Project (SWAP) is operating in Western Kenya with public health programs and research. We established with your support the Sondu Water Enterprise. We draw water from the river and use technology to provide clean water to vulnerable communities, who buy it at an affordable price. Besides from clean water we established a public toilet with a hand washing station for demonstration and we provide health education. Prior to this intervention the morbidity and mortality in the area was high due to diarrheal illness, which is one of the leading causes of death among children under five. Community members were lacking access to clean water and drawing water from a contaminated river, which was used by cattle and humans for bathing and washing. The area experienced frequent outbreaks such as cholera which often was fatal. We would like to invest more in mobilization and training of the community members to increase use of the Sondu Water Enterprise and enhance sustainability. We also plan to continue monitor the quality of service and do regular water testing. Your donations will make a difference and save lives. The report shows our most recent activities and photo's of the intervention. We are very grateful and are looking forward for your continued support in the coming years

Warm greetings from the Management of SWAP.




The Sondu Water enterprises uses skyhydrant filtration technology. Raw water is pumped from the river and collected in a water tank after which it is filtered through the membranes of the skyhydrant filtration unit.  It is then channeled to outlets and sold to the communities at an affordable rate.

During the reporting period, the team visited the site and managed to clean the main raw water storage tanks and clean water storage tanks. This was done to ensure that there was clean water passing through the main filter unit and all the storage tanks are cleaned with the chlorine solution. Occasionally the process is quality control that is done to ensure the water is safe for consumption. 

Safe water storage

To ensure the consumers of the water enterprise maintain good quality status of the water, Siemens Stiftung donated 20 litres branded jerry cans that are used to store water at point of use to minimize recontamination. The Maji Safi 20 litres containers are retailed at the kiosk and each is sold at KES 200 ($2) for customers. 

Monthly water Quality testing

The purpose of the monthly quality assurance and testing is to ensure that the water provided to the community meets the highest quality standards test. For this reason, monthly samples of the water at the main taps are taken for quality control and analysis. This is done at SWAP’s water lab.

We have attached the full report for the months of July to September.



We would like to improve and scale up our services to have a bigger health impact and chance of sustainability of the Sondu Water Enterprise in the near future.

  • Many costumers are already reaching the enterprise for water. We would like to take advantage of this and offer few health products for sale, such as hand washing soaps, household water treatment, jerry cans, ceramic filters, toilet tissue, sanitary pads, solar lamps, clean cook stoves, nutritional supplements, mosquito nets and repellent soaps. These products are already available at SWAP and can be introduced to Sondu.
  • Monthly Stipend for a Community Health Promoter, who would focus on health education and sales of products while assisting with the water sales.
  • Refresher trainings of the team on business skills, record keeping, social marketing and social behavioral change communication, product, health and hygiene promotion and safe water systems interventions.
  • Community and partners engagement, regular local leaders meetings, meetings with community health volunteers to enhance ownership, support and community mobilization.
  • A smart phone for the water operator and community health volunteer for transmission of sales data and mobile money transfer (Mpesa).
  • Branded T shirts and leso’s used by mothers as wrap around skirts and to carry their babies. Also branded riding gears for the motorbike riders who sell water to households. This can be used as marketing tool and incentive for regular customers.
  • Solar panels to facilitate the water operator to continue operations and sales in the evenings and increase sales and revenue
  • Solar security lights for the night
  • Solar pump to avoid the cost of fuel ongoing.
  • Training of a reliever during leave or sickness of the water operator
  • Monthly water quality tests and monitoring which can be done at SWAP's water lab
  • Monthly wages of the water operator and security guard
  • Continued maintenance of the site


During the period between January and March 2017 we faced severe drought in the area with communities at risk of contracting diarrheal illness. Water sources were running dry and heavily contaminated, shared with animals as well as used for washing clothes and bathing.

Because of the drought there has been overwhelming demand for water from the Sondu Water Enterprise, with people lining up for water as early as 5 am in the morning and the center staying operational during evening hours and weekend.

Following several management meetings to prioritize the most urgent requirements, SWAP management settled on the following, which needed funding.

  • Business Permit- Annual requirements for enterprises
  • Fencing and installation of a gate for security reasons.
  • Additional 5000 liter tank to increase capacity and provide more water
  • Distribution of IEC materials / Calendars as incentives for customers
  • Sale of Clean Vessels – 20 liters jerry cans
  • Monthly water quality water testing of the water sold to the communities
  • Monthly Wages of the water operator and security operator
  • Monitoring visits by the Management Team of SWAP and ongoing mentoring
  • Provision of cleaning materials, toilet tissue, hand washing soap.

We sincerely want to thank all those sponsors and donors who contributed towards this project.

Alie Eleveld - Country Director

Safe Water and AIDS Project


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Organization Information


Location: KISUMU - Kenya
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @swapkenya
Project Leader:
Eleveld Alie
$8,831 raised of $25,000 goal
69 donations
$16,169 to go
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Pay Bill: 891300
Account: GG24977

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