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Give the Gift of Water this Holiday Season

Kenya, a country known for its rich, lively culture and natural beauty, faces an ongoing struggle for water. Each day, women and young girls trek across miles of land–backs aching and bodies sore–lugging water to their family homes. Approximately 15% of Kenyans rely on unimproved water sources like ponds, shallow wells, and rivers to meet their needs [1]. This water crisis is felt directly by many Kenyans–considering that nearly 10 million people drink directly from contaminated water sources [2]. A significant portion of Kenyans live in rural areas where water issues are exacerbated, due to the economic burden that falls more on farming communities than urban ones. There is a crucial need for more sustainable water solutions for communities around the country.


Students in classroom at Murgut Primary School (in the Chilchila Division, Sub-county in Kericho, Kenya)

As we have discussed in prior posts, the responsibility of water collection is most often on women and children, and this trend is no different in Kenya. Young girls who are eager to learn have no choice but to abandon school, replacing hours of education with hours of walking [sometimes dangerous terrain]. Nearly half (45%) of households report that a female aged 15 or older usually collects the drinking water for the family [3]. This number increases among rural households to nearly 60%, since they are much less likely to have a water source on the premises [3].


Having an easy, accessible source of water is imperative, which is why water collection tanks are an excellent solution to this pressing need. Water tanks provide much-needed access to clean water for both individuals and the community as a whole. Time spent collecting water transforms into learning, growing food, and contributing to overall community success.


Photo of the water tank from first completed Hopefull Handbags project, in September 2022.

This holiday season, we are partnering with Hopefull Handbags to help their efforts in providing support to domestic abuse survivors around the world. Hopefull Handbags, whose mission is to create a positive impact in the community and allow survivors to achieve sustainability for themselves and their children, provides impactful solutions to distinct needs. This incredible nonprofit organization also works to bring awareness to domestic, gender, dating, and child abuse. Echoing the connection between women’s oppression and water poverty central to us at WWSE (see our 2021 collection of blog posts on this), survivors working with Hopefull Handbags in Kenya’s Rift Valley, reported that water is their communities greatest need.


We are proud to be partnering with Hopefull Handbags and holding a fundraiser to purchase one 10,000 liter rain collection unit for the Murgut Primary School (and surrounding community) in the Chilchila Division, in Kericho, Kenya.


Our goal is to raise at least $830.68, which will pay for all the labor and materials needed to install one 10,000 liter water storage tank. This storage system enables rain, the community's natural resource, to become sustainable, safe drinking water. We ultimately hope to help provide many more schools in the area with tanks like this, but as the small organization we are, we need to start small. Paying for this first water tank will be a first step for us at WWSE to help ensure sustainable water access for women and children in West Kenya. Please join us in our commitment to global water sustainability by donating today to provide a water storage tank for the students at Murgut Primary School.


About WaterWoman Sustainability Education, Inc.


At WaterWoman Sustainability Education, we aim to engage, educate and empower future generations to end the global water crisis. Through water sustainability education, we can get even closer to combating the impacts of water insecurity around the world.


Through this fundraiser in partnership with another 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, Hopefull Handbags, we will be helping to ensure sustainable water collection, and creating a healthier and happier future for women and children in West Kenya. Please join us to provide a water storage tank for the students at Murgut Primary School by donating today!


References


  1. Water.org. Kenya. Water.org. Accessed November 28, 2022. https://water.org/our-impact/where-we-work/kenya/

  2. Unicef. Water, Sanitation and Hygiene. Unicef. Accessed November 28, 2022. https://www.unicef.org/kenya/water-sanitation-and-hygiene

  3. UNICEF (2018) Situation Analysis of Children and Women in Kenya 2017, UNICEF, Nairobi, Kenya.



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