Funded by Robb Henderson, John Thompson, & The ABC Delegation, The Samburu Project drilled and installed a shallow well equipped with a handpump in this community.

Narrative

The women used to draw water 5 km away behind the mountain. Now the well is very near to their home. Community members said they would have died in the drought without the well.

    Stephanie Ng ( The Samburu Project ) Over 3 Years after completion 12 May, 2012

    Stephanie Ng's Visit- May 2012

    Status: Complete - Successful

    Operating Status:

    On Friday May 11, 2012, two women from the Sarara Women’s Group saw Lucas in town around 2PM and wanted to have a meeting with us. They said that there was an issue with the Lentanai/Ntepes well- they said that the volume of water being pumped up was little. Lucas sent Paul to see what the problem was. At 4:30 pm, after our meeting with Saatho and Satla and as we were heading back to the office, Lucas gave Paul a call. Paul said that it was an issue with the rubber and it has been fixed and is working fine again.

    The next morning, Lucas and I set out to visit the well. As we approached the well we saw two women and a few children at the well. One woman was pumping the water while the other woman sat on the slab near the spout of the well holding up an inverted water bottle to funnel the water into the jerry can. We first spoke with an elder man in the community who answered most of our questions about the well. He told us that there are 298 households in this community with an average of 5 people per community. Like in the other Samburu villages, the burden of finding and carrying water falls on the women. Before this well was in place, women would walk anywhere from 7-10 km a day; he pointed to a very distant mountain and said that women had to go behind that mountain in order to find a water source which was almost always a hand dug hole with contaminated water. Women would have to leave their home very early in the morning, around 6AM, and would not return until later in the afternoon, around 3PM. Now that there is a well in the community, people in this particular village walk a total of 10 minutes to an hour each day. However there are some people that live at a foot of a nearby mountain that walk 1.5 hours each way because there is no clean water source near their homestead.

    The elder informed us that the water from the well is used primarily for for cooking (which includes drinking) and secondarily for cleaning (bathing, utensils, clothes). Having been properly trained at the hygiene workshop, this community does not allow the livestock to drink at the well. They are requesting a trough or pipe from the well that would bring water to the livestock.

    The elder regards this well as a God-given resource and miracle. This was a very poor, neglected and empty community. He conveyed how truly grateful they were to have this well. Since having this well, the time and distance to fetch water has drastically been reduced. Moreover, this water is clean. Before there used to be so many water borne diseases because the water they could find was contaminated by fecal matter. Children are now able to go to school- 90% of the children go to school (many hundreds go to primary school) and every child goes to nursery (there is more than 150 in the nursery). Women can do more things with their time: bead and jewelry making, farming, livestock trading (they get livestock somewhere where it is cheaper and then bring it back to sell for a profit), running kiosks. Furtherore, women now have time to look after their kids (clothe, bathe, feed them) and have quality time with both their children and husbands. The time saved by not having to go far distances to find water allows these women to intimately bond with their family.

    In terms of operation and maintenance, there was low volume flow with the well yesterday. However, Paul came and fixed the rubber and now the well is working normally. This well has only had this problem twice (yesterday being the second time). The community has a fund for repairs and a system to gather the dues. Every month each household pays 20 shillings; when the fund reaches 5,000 shillings the households stop contributing since that amount is more than enough to fix the common problem of a worn out rubber.

    This well is located near a road that connects distant villages to town. The elder alerted us that there are thieves that pass through this area that want to steal the hand pumps in order to melt the metal and sell it. Therefore, the well committee has alerted the community and everyone takes turn watching the well in the daytime. During the night, they have a night guard stationed to keep an eye on it and also to show people that may want water but have never used a hand pump before how to operate the well. The elder also informed us that if a community member spoiled the well in any shape or form, the rest of the community would curse them which is a very serious matter in the Samburu culture. It is easy to see just how much they value this well.

    After we finished talking with the elder men, Lucas and I made our way to a few of the Samburu women who were sitting under a nearby tree. Ellen Lenamarker greeted us and began by thanking us for coming and welcoming us into this community. She described how prior to this well she would walk up to 10 kilometers (to a community called Lokuro) to find water but now she is at ease. When we asked how the well has personally affected her life, she told us that the well changed her life in regards to cleanliness and health. Not only is her homestead very clean and she can wash her utensils and clothes regularly, but everyone is healthier than before. Furthermore, older people such as herself could not travel far to get water – before when there was no well, it was hard for them to get enough water for their survival and instead they languish in their homes. In these ways, this well has really changed every life in the community.

    She went on to say that this well is being overused. This well is shared by 4 zones; she guestimates that each village has about 1,300 people. Furthermore, people from across the way (not part of the 4 zones) also come to this well to get water and she thinks there are about 1,500 from this area. On top of that, as I had mentioned before, this well is along a major road so many people passing through also use the well. When you total it all up there are easily 5,000 people that use this well according to Ellen. Therefore, she is requesting that we drill another well near the mountain (where people walk up to 1.5 hours to get water from Lentanai/Ntepes Well) as a way to relieve the pressure on this well.

    At this moment, one of the other woman spoke up and asked for two more wells around this area. Lucas was very patient and understanding. He began asking telling them our process for choosing communities and then asked them whether they would want women that have to walk 7-10 km to get water to have a well first or instead have another well in their community. Immediately and without hesitation the women said they would want their fellow Samburu sisters in other communities to be relieved of that burden. By taking the time to explain to these women that there are many other communities that are in dire need of a nearby water source, he was able to get them to understand why we cannot at the moment drill many wells in one community. That being said, Lucas agrees that a well near the edge of the mountain would be justifiable since a well in that area could reach many people. When we were finished, Ellen pulled out a beautiful bracelet and presented it to me as a gift. These women have very little yet they are so generous; they went on to say, that they had just learned that morning I was coming and if they had known before then, they would have brought more gifts. Their willingness to share their possessions with me really touched and moved me.

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    Heidi Sheppard ( The Samburu Project ) Almost 3 Years after completion 16 Jun, 2011

    June 2011 Update by Paalo Lekuuk

    Status: Complete - Successful

    Operating Status:

    Routine visit:
    -well is functional
    -met with the well committee

    Heidi Sheppard ( The Samburu Project ) Over 2 Years after completion 12 May, 2011

    May 2011 Update by Paalo Lekuuk

    Status: Complete - Successful

    Operating Status:

    Routine visit:
    -met the well committee and assessed their progress
    -well is functioning

    Heidi Sheppard ( The Samburu Project ) Over 2 Years after completion 23 Feb, 2011

    Kristen Kosinski's Visit - February 2011

    Status: Complete - Successful

    Operating Status:

    On her visit Kristen met with a variety of community members, including elders, children and the chairwoman of the community's women's group. Below is the information she gathered on this visit:
    -Fencing and sign are in great condition
    -Three villages are benefiting: Ntepes, Sordo, Lentanai
    -Location is near Ntepes Primary School
    -At present, the community is not paying for rubbers. We discussed a community fund.
    -Women's group has 30 women. Ellen, who Kristen met in 2005, is a community member and female community leader.

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    Heidi Sheppard ( The Samburu Project ) Almost 2 Years after completion 28 Jun, 2010

    Sarah Ball's and Ashley Cook's Visit - June 2010

    Status: Complete - Successful

    Operating Status:

    Notes from the Lentanai Well:
    -Total of 4 breaks since the well was built
    -The steal rods inside the well broke
    -The 4-inch pipe broke
    -The rubbers have needed replacing --> The community got the extra parts from Lucas and fixed the problem themselves
    -Need to keep spare parts in site
    -Fence around the well is gone, probably stolen

    "If the well closed, we will die." - Lentanai Community Member

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  • Impact Assessment (M&E) Phase Project completed on 15 Aug, 2008 Implementation Phase
  • Implementation Phase Project started on 1 Aug, 2008 Preparation Phase

Funded by Robb Henderson, John Thompson, & The ABC Delegation, The Samburu Project drilled and installed a shallow well equipped with a handpump in this community.

Narrative

The women used to draw water 5 km away behind the mountain. Now the well is very near to their home. Community members said they would have died in the drought without the well.

Sustainability

Creating and measuring long-term impact

The community agrees by contract to pay for maintenance costs. Each well committee collects approximately $250 per year for this purpose. In order to ensure well functionality and monitor its use, The Samburu Project spends approximately $160 per year per well. This comes from our general fund, which is maintained by individual donations.

Impact

People Impacted: 3000

People Getting Safe Drinking Water: 3000

The main objective of the project is to provide clean, safe drinking water.

People Getting Sanitation: 3000

Improved sanitation has been an ancillary benefit of community water availability.

People Getting Other Benefits: 3000

Maintenance/Operating Costs Annual, in US$: $410

Creating and measuring long-term impact

The community agrees by contract to pay for maintenance costs. Each well committee collects approximately $250 per year for this purpose. In order to ensure well functionality and monitor its use, The Samburu Project spends approximately $160 per year per well. This comes from our general fund, which is maintained by individual donations.

Funding

Funded:
$12,500
Community:
$1,850
Final Cost:
$14,350
$13,000:
Anonymous

Plan/Proposal