We will provide rainwater harvesting from the roofs of schools into two 10,000 liter (2,500 gal) water tanks, two door, handicapped accessible latrine and a hand wash station to nine primary schools. The nine schools have over 4,500 students. These schools currently have little or no access to water.
For the past two years the Rotary club of Downtown Los Angeles has been the international sponsor for two Global Grants from the Rotary Foundation to provide clean water and sanitation to schools and clinics in Migori, Kenya. This has been possible through the generous support of twelve other clubs in 5280 and three clubs in other districts and through the support of District 5280 and District 9212. Through their support we obtained a $41K grant in 2013/14 and a $48K grant in 2014/15. We provided clean water and sanitation to 1,500 students in the first year and 4,500 students this year. It is the intent of the Downtown Los Angeles and the Suna Migori clubs to continue this project for two more Global Grants in 2015/16 and 2016/17. At the end of this time we will have provided clean water and sanitation facilities to over 15,000 students and at least two rural clinics in Migori Kenya.
Three years ago, the president of the Rotary Club of Downtown Los Angeles, Peter Lattey received a plea for help from the President of the Migori, Kenya Rotary club on the club's facebook page. The Migori club was failing and he needed some advice. After some discussion it was decided that the club should find a service project that would raise their profile in the community. Thus was born a water and sanitation project that will ultimately provide clean water, latrines and hand wash stations to over 15,000 school students at 28 rural schools and two rural clinics in Migori county, Kenya.
In 2013/14 the Suna Migori Rotarians identified four schools and a rural clinic that had either no water or very poor water and poor latrines. With a Rotary Global Grant we provided each location with two tanks, a latrine and wash station. This immediately benefitted the 1,500 students. Enrollment jumped. Absenteeism due to disease fell. The local Rotarians finished the project in four months and the Grant was closed out two months later.
The Suna Migori club is now a vibrant, active club and is recognized as a group that gets things done for the community. When we started this project, the county government wanted no part of it. Rotary was seen as just another NGO that was probably corrupt and almost certainly incompetent. Phase one was a success and now, in phase two, the county politicians are providing half the water tanks and insist on meeting with Rotarians. We think that some county officials will be joining Rotary this year.
This part of Kenya gets plenty of rain twice a year, but the groundwater is often of poor quality. We decided that the best solution to the water issue was to collect rainwater from the iron roofs of the schools and store it in above ground tanks. Most schools receive two, 10,000 liter tanks, a handwash station and a two door, wheelchair accessible latrine. Rotary provides the tanks, the plumbing and any skilled labour. The community digs the 25 ft deep latrine and provides the bricks for the latrine. They also provide materials for the base of the tanks and unskilled labour.
To see what the project means to the people in Migori, take a look at the video on Youtube. www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ad54H49MsZU