Some time ago, the World Bank financed water and sewer systems in our area. There already was access to electricity (for those who could pay for it), but water and sewer are an important part of good hygiene and disease prevention.
So that’s good news, right? Sure for the sewer system; that is going well. However, during the last year, we have had water three times. We have a water meter and pay monthly fees, but as I said at the water office, “I can’t wash my hands with the meter”. Of course it’s crazy to be paying for something that is not doing what it is made for – delivering and measuring water flow.
Apparently water levels in Nairobi are at less than 18% of what they should be. This is due to an increasing population, but more so due to lack of rain. Therefore they have to ration water to the entire city, but the poor get hit harder than their richer counterparts, who have more influence. They have or are building several dams, but it’s not enough. The only way to get more water is to go down. This is done with a borehole (a well). There are many being drilled, and there are already three relatively near to us.
The youth group in our area sells water at the moment that they transport in from a well relatively close by. They want to partner with us, and would then sell water from us, with a profit going to Matunda. We already have three estimates and have requested a government agency to help drill. They have already made a site visit, so we’re on our way – or at least have made a good start.
This would not only give us a supply of water, but also allow us to start a garden – on top of the toilet building and in boxes along the walls. It would also be educational for the children, as they could plant the seeds, take care of the plants, and give them water.
The youth group is already talking about vegetables and even trees in our area. They would then be able to start a business selling both. (They already collect garbage in the area, as well as selling water.)
We’re already looking for money, as even if the government helps with drilling, it’s expensive. It just could work.