MAJI SALAMA ACTIVITIES 2018 – 2019
Kenya continues to have a high mortality rate due to water borne disease in children under 5 years, especially in rural areas. This year has seen us develop the use of a new ultrafilter system. Unlike the filters used on our projects previously, this one is static, for use by communities, clinics and schools.
Maji Salama continues to work through its Kenya NGO partner, Maji Zima, to implement projects in Kenya. The year to July 2019 saw completion of the pilot programme, with gravity fed water filters installed in three communities: Africa Inland Church Diguna, Nkaimurunya Primary School, and Beacon of Hope Clinic, all in Kajiado County. This was in addition to the filters at Ongata Rongai and Kitingele, near Nairobi.
The agreed strategy to identify the communities to participate in the scheme was to negotiate with community leaders, and then follow up with community meetings to aid the planning and execution of each pilot project in selected locations. The key factors were:
The communities must have existing sources of water, believed to be biologically contaminated, and have no immediate sustainable treatment.
The communities acknowledged the water problem and welcomed support to improve the situation.
Geographical locations of these communities should make physical monitoring of the 3 pilot projects by Maji Zima staff easy. This would allow quick response/adjustments to any pressing need from the beneficiaries.
Socio-economic status of the communities: focus on economically challenged populations residing in rural, peri-urban and urban informal human settlements.
The communities had shown initiative in improving community resources and had committed members equipped with the skills to maintain the project.
The pilot scheme was completed on 3rd May, 2019, with all gravity fed water filters successfully installed.
The project details are:
Africa Inland Church (A.I.C.) Diguna is a well-established faith based organization, with its origins in Germany, located in Mbagathi about 20 kilometres from Nairobi. Apart from its religious aims the organization supports education and food programmes in local communities in Kenya and currently also engages in providing access to water in very remote villages in the country. In 2018 the organization learned its borehole water, used daily for drinking and domestic purposes, was contaminated with bacteria causing dysentery in the local population.
The project trained 8 individuals and 2 team leaders responsible for daily use of the filter and to ensure its proper maintenance. The team leaders report to Maji Zima weekly on cases of water related illnesses, maintenance carried out and challenges experienced The filter serves 250 people daily and another 600 people during the annual youth camps held within the institution.
There have been no cases of water related illness reported, no challenges experienced by the team leaders, back flush was being carried out on a weekly basis, weekly supervision by Maji Zima staff was in place, and from the installation date (20/2/19) to the end of May 2019, a total of 1823 cubic meters of water had been filtered for drinking. By the end of June, 3603 cubic metres of water had been filtered and no difficulties had been experienced. There had been no reported cases of water borne disease.
Nkaimurunya is a public primary school in Kajiado County, 17½ kilometres from Nairobi. At the time of the pilot project, the school had 1200 pupils aged 5 to 15 years, with 27 teachers. The school relied on untreated borehole water for drinking and cooking and also sold water to the community. A MS-MZ water filter was successfully installed on 29th March. At the end of the project 12 teachers and 2 team leaders, selected from the 12 teachers to be responsible for the usage and maintenance of the filter, had been trained.
The project serves not only the school population, but also about 800 families who depend on the school’s borehole water. It will also generate a little income as the school intends to sell filtered water cheaply to the surrounding communities.
Assessment of the project was hindered by the month-long April school holidays. It meant that the project only ran for one week, followed by a month long break, and resumed the first week of May. The school filtered 23 cubic meters of water in that first week. By the end of June the school had filtered 35m3 of water. The school experienced difficulties with taps going missing (reports were that children were stealing and selling them to a local scrap merchant). The school then installed plastic taps. There have been no reported cases of water borne disease.
Beacon of Hope is a faith based and community NGO mainly focusing on addressing the HIV/AIDS pandemic among women in poor communities. Currently the organization runs education (Beacon Academy and Beacon Training Institute) and health (Beacon Clinic) programmes.
The project focused on the Beacon Clinic where 21 staff handled approximately 100 patients daily. The clinic depended on borehole water for all its water related needs.
The project successfully installed one MS-MZ water filter on 2nd May. A total of 11 clinic rooms. each with one water tap, were connected to the filtered water outlet tap from the filter. 8 staff were trained and from that group 2 staff were trained as team leaders to take proper care of the filter and ensure it is fully and properly utilized. By the end of June 69 cubic metres of water had been filtered. No cases of water related illness have been reported.
The three projects are doing well and providing safe water for around 2,000 people per day. Independent scientific testing of the filters at all of the sites was carried out by KIRDI (Kenya Industrial and Research Institute) showed the post–filter installation water was free of coliforms, E-coli and Salmonella, with the exception of Nkaimurunya school. This was attributed to the tampering with the taps.
Our partner in Kenya is working hard to expand the programme and is in discussions with a number of primary and secondary schools, as well as other NGOs and charities about potential partnerships.