Q&A: Boda Boda Initiatives

Discussion Forum

Kiosk question and comment on profile

By Blue Planet Network Posted on Fri 29 Aug 2008, almost 12 years ago

Dear Beatrice and Lydiah,

We look forward to welcoming you and your organization.

I want to understand your water kiosks and tank projects a bit better. The kiosks just use the piped water and distribute it? Is there a charge?

What about the plastic water tanks? Are they for kiosk use or for household use?

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Regarding your PWX profile:

- I would suggest making your profile very short, so it pops up as a bubble on map.

- Create 2 different contacts: 1 is Lydiah (need to edit and put some bio in) and 2 is Beatrice (already filled in). If you are both sharing an email, only put it on one, otherwise you will get duplicate emails.

Thanks and regards,
Rajesh

Kiosk question and comment on profile

By Boda Boda Initiatives Posted on Mon 08 Sep 2008, almost 12 years ago

Dear Mr. Shah,
We are sorry to have taken so long to answer your question and also to respond on your comment on profile.Our internet signal had been very weak and we have been unable to acesss the internet but the situation has been improved by our ISP.
Our current project area is in the informal settlements near a major municipality called Thika about 60 Km North of the capital city of Nairobi.
The Municipal Council has water systems nearby which we can pay for water connection. The only issue is that being an informal settlement, the people have no legal rights on the property they are squatting in and one needs ownership documents to have water connected to your premises. Another issue is the high initial cost of the connection which amounts to approximately US$ 600 which covers trenching,labour,water pipes,construction of a water kiosk with a standpipe etc.Due to constant water outages,a plastic water tank is a vital component in all households and water kiosks to store water because water can disappear for a week!
Therefore for any meaningful water project to succeed a plasic water tank able to hold 2-5000 litres of water is a must.
Fortunately the water charges are not high approximately US$ 20 for a consumption of 13 cubic metres (10,000 litres)We are able to provide water to our members at subsidized rates and able to pay the monthly bill.Our members cannot afford the intial charges thus we combine resources and petition the council to allow us to construct the water kiosks on the road reserves.
We are working on the profile and will follow your suggestions.
Regards
Beatrice Wamuhu

Kiosk question and comment on profile

By Blue Planet Network Posted on Mon 08 Sep 2008, almost 12 years ago

Dear Beatrice,

Thank you for your response.

You have clarified your plan and approach well.

In addition, now you have a taste of how the peer review during your application process will be conducted.

Regards,
Rajesh

Kiosk question and comment on profile

By Boda Boda Initiatives Posted on Tue 09 Sep 2008, almost 12 years ago

Dear Rajesh,
Thanks for your kind comments.It is very exciting to have a taste of the review process and we are all set to go.
Please note that we have also edited our profile and it appears as a bubble albeit a big one.If you feel that we should make it even smaller,kindly inform us.
Kind Regards.
Beatrice

Urban Challenges

By A Single Drop Posted on Wed 10 Sep 2008, almost 12 years ago

Hi Beatrice and Lydiah

Gemma here! Thanks for submitting such a comprehensive profile! I hope you are enjoying the review process and getting comfortable with how the system works.

Because this is a review process, we are asking you questions about how your organization works, but you don't necessarily have to change your profile to reflect our questions.

Of all our women, you are the only two that had a target area in an urban setting. What are the challenges that you've had to face working in the slums in terms of choosing technologies and community organizing? How did your groups develop their action plans? Was it facilitated? Did Boda Boda Initiatives design the strategy and the community agreed?

How often do the groups meet? How often does Boda Boda do workshops for the groups?

In sisterhood!
gemma

Urban Challenges

By Boda Boda Initiatives Posted on Thu 11 Sep 2008, almost 12 years ago

Hi Gemma,

Thank you for your email.

When working in an urban setting one meets unusual challenges different from rural areas in terms of poltico,socio economic and cultural aspects.

The residents in towns are better enlightened politically and they know how the government works and always demand fair representation by electing leaders who umderstand their problems.For example in our area the local councillor comes from the slums and we cordinate with him when conducting our projects because he knows what his people need and is a great help in community mobilisation and organisation.

In socio economic terms the residents perform poorly because they have lost the village advantages where neighbours care for each other and assist each other materially when in need.The urbanites also have to buy everything while the rural folk can grow greens and keep a cow or two to supplement their income.

The metroplitan nature of the urban setting negates cultural values and norms practised im rural settlements.The urbanites have lost their cultural values and ideals and consequently lost sight of a vital aspect of their upbringing thus behave without much regard to taboos and become "westernised".

Therefore these factors are considered when we chose technologies to implement.For example it is taboo in some communities for in laws to use the same toilet.In such communities you have to construct separate toilets because if you dont,the said communities will use the famous flying toliets where they utilise plastic papers and throw them away.We also incorporate members from different ethnic communities to enhance equal representation and cohesion.

For any action plan to suceed comunity representation is essential.At Bodaboda Initiatives we liaise with elected community leaders and set up forums where we strategise on activities to be conducted according to our mandate.We prefer not tackle issues outside our goals and objectives in order to remain focussed on our vision and mission.Once we agree with the the community leaders they now spread the information to their cell groups.Due to the large numbers of people involved we prefer to use the "parliamentary" method of representation.
We meet with the community leaders once a month but the leaders are in contact with their cell group members on a daily basis since they participate in microfinance meetings evry week.

It is difficult to conduct workshops unless there is funding from external donors however we do try to enlighten community leaders on new projects.For example we did meet the women leaders and pass on the knowledge we learnt from the African Women and Water Conference!We would wish to hold more workshops but due to the expense involved,we are unable to do so.

Regards
Beatrice

Urban Challenges

By A Single Drop Posted on Wed 24 Sep 2008, almost 12 years ago

Thanks so much for your response! Your observations are so insightful! The socio cultural challenges even within the confinement of Thikka are regional as well right? I remember in your tour, you walked us through areas that were completely different. Some were surpisingly clean, others that were very very dirty and others that were primarily populated by refugees. In choosing who you work with, is it demand driven, in other words, do they find you? Or do you identify a community that needs help and approach them?

Also, I wanted to ask about working with Local Councilors/Gov't. Do you have challenges working with government?

Thanks so much for this very informative exchange!

Be well
Gemma

Urban Challenges

By A Single Drop Posted on Wed 24 Sep 2008, almost 12 years ago

Thanks so much for your response! Your observations are so insightful! The socio cultural challenges even within the confinement of Thikka are regional as well right? I remember in your tour, you walked us through areas that were completely different. Some were surpisingly clean, others that were very very dirty and others that were primarily populated by refugees. In choosing who you work with, is it demand driven, in other words, do they find you? Or do you identify a community that needs help and approach them?

Also, I wanted to ask about working with Local Councilors/Gov't. Do you have challenges working with government?

Thanks so much for this very informative exchange!

Be well
Gemma

Urban Challenges

By Boda Boda Initiatives Posted on Tue 07 Oct 2008, over 11 years ago

Hi Gemma,
I am terribly sorry that i had not answered your questions and i have just received an email from Annete to remind me of the same.The problem is the high cost of internet in this side of the world.My internet account was due and i was unable to use it.We have solved this problem until another time!
I am glad that you still remember the environment.What you were not aware was that the place is very insecure and we had placed security personel from our group all round just in case you were threatened!

In choosing who we work with we got involved because most of our househelp comes from these settlements and they could tell us the problems being faced by the residents.We are also members of Thika womens forums and during meetings it was decided that members had to do something to alleviate the acute water and sanitation issues.We identified the need for clean water and sanitation and decided to assist

Working with government has its own challenges.Most of the councillors are elected on a platform of assisting the needy but once elected for five years,they collude with corrupt officers at the Town Hall and grab plots and other public amenities.They also hijack projects initiated by organisations such as ours and make the constituents believe that it was their own initiatives.When projects are funded they insist on influencing activities to be conducted in areas where they are popular to enable them win seats..However we are influential in advicing the constituents on the type of leader we would prefer to work with and we usually win.Thus the councilors owe their positions to civil society and they are careful when dealing with us. Other government officers make our work difficult by insisting on bribes before they may connect water or repair leakages.
Once again we are sorry for the delay and we will try to see that it does not happen again.
Best regards
Beatrice
PS.We saw that we got a 6 on rating.What does that mean?


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