Health and Water Foundation is a non-profit organisation based in Kisii District in Kenya focused on improving the health and wellbeing of communities by developing projects including providing access to clean water and sanitation, as well as education on water, hygiene and sanitation, and opportunities for young people and adults to develop new skills and improve their employment prospects.
By addressing these issues, their aim is to reduce the spread of water-borne diseases and improve the overall health and quality of life of the communities they serve.
Creating entrepreneurship opportunities for young people
This project will work to create sustainable employment for rural youth in Kenya’s Kisii, Nyamira, Migori and Homa-Bay Counties through active engagement in agribusiness. In their surrounding counties HWF would form youth groups on particular aspects of business entrepreneurship, and link these to value chains in agriculture. ( A value chain is a step-by-step business model for transforming a product or service from idea to reality). They would be helped to work with financial service providers to build entrepreneurial capacity for 100 such groups and supported to develop business management skills, create marketing opportunities and integrate innovative digital technologies to boost productivity.
Ensuring improved sanitation in primary schools
This Project’s goal is to raise awareness of teachers, learners, schools’ support staff and wider communities on health and hygiene post-Covid through community group sensitisation meetings and ensuring better sanitation education in the schools. HWF would recruit 25 Community Health Volunteers (CHVs); train Trainers to train girls on hygiene and the management of menstruation; train school staff and pupils and offer training to the communities surrounding the schools on hygiene, management and operation of the facilities provided; train parents on PHAST (Participatory Hygiene and Sanitation Transformation). The trainings are participatory and designed to empower parents to control sanitation-related diseases.
This will result in improved awareness of hygiene and sanitation among school staff, pupils, and students; improved girls’ school enrolment, retention and transition to secondary school, as they are particularly disadvantaged and deterred from school attendance by poor hygiene practices. Also all this will lead to a reduction in WASH (Wash, Sanitation and Hygiene) related diseases, and other infections such as Covid19, within the Manga District community.
Overcoming disadvantages for girls in primary education
The aim of this project is to promote gender equality and empower women through the elimination of gender disparity in primary education, in particular in schools which only have in place latrines shared by both girls and boys. Pupils will have access to hygienic sanitation through the provision of handwashing facilities and latrines; clean and safe water available to all pupils through provision of rainwater harvesting equipment; provision of an improved learning environment through the rehabilitation of 5 classrooms. At least one female teacher at each school and three female volunteers from the Parent Teacher Association (PTA) will be trained to educate girls on hygiene and the management of sexual maturation, and all staff and pupils will trained on hygiene and the management and operation of the facilities provided.
This will result in each school being able to provide pupils with clean and safe water, adequate hygiene and sanitation facilities as well as hygiene awareness for students, staff and members of the PTA. There will be less absence from school due diarrhoea or other communicable diseases. Girls will be no longer at risk of harassment or molestation when using latrines because adequate privacy and security will be provided.
All this will lead to enhanced educational performance of girls, as gender disparities will be reduced because the school will be more suitable for pubescent girls, e.g. girls do not skip school when menstruating.