Clean water, of course, is the key to everything. Water is life itself, yes? Our focus on clean water is on two projects right now. We’re looking to create a consistent clean water supply at the homestead that eliminates exposure to malaria-carrying mosquitos at night and to provide clean water access for the community near the hospital we’re building.
In Kenya, many rural residents rely on ponds, rivers and open borehole wells for drinking, cooking and washing. Those with financial resources might build a water storage tank to collect rainwater runoff. They may even be able to drill a clean closed borehole well and hand draw water up every day, or install a handpump to pull the water up, assuming the water level doesn’t drop. If you’re close enough to town, and have the money, you can pay to connect your home to the city’s tap water. But even having regular access to municipal tap water is a luxury in most rural Kenya communities.
Think how rare it is for your tap water to be turned off. Would it surprise you to learn that only 9 of the 55 public water providers in Kenya are able to provide continuous water every day? The water may be on one minute, and then off for hours, or days. After we paid to connect the homestead to the municipal water supply, it was 5 days before we actually got water flowing into the house. And every week the water is off for some period of time. Which means the key to clean continuous water, even when you have access to municipal water, is to drill a well and connect your clean water well to your storage tank. Then connect the water tank to the water line running into the house with a cut off valve. Add a portable water filtration system and you create a system that provides continuous clean water, even during the dry season. Total cost, approximately $515, plus you reduce or eliminate the water bill.
We will install a kitchen faucet filter ($15), then a whole house filter ($150 with two filters), improve the collection of rainwater ($25), install a submersible solar water pump inside the homestead’s borehole well ($250), connect the borehole well to the water tank, and connect the tank to the house water pipes ($75), all using solar.
The community well near the Bokoholo hospital dried up a few years back. So the community is again relying on dirty water sources. Our biggest project for building wells is drilling and installing a new deep well on the hospital property that will provide water for the hospital, the caretaker and his family, and for the nearby community. We’re actively seeking out partnership with water charities so we can get this built faster than we can if we go it alone.
Drilling and installing the well and water pump for the hospital comes with an estimated price tag of approximately $30,000 from start to finish, which includes these elements (all are approximate costs):
- Hydro-Geological Survey for drilling depth, soil formation, expected water yield and quality and the WRMA permit: $500 .
- Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA) $450. For the NEMA permit, including site visit, government fees, report writing and submission of report.
- Transportation, setup and breakdown of equipment at site ($565)
- Borehole drilling charges from $6.50 per Metre ($1200 for a deep well at 180m)
- Drill pump installations and connections. Cost varies depending on the type of pumping head and the water flow rate. $500
- Steel Casings to line the well shaft. $4,415
- Gravel packing to stabilize casings. $230
- Well construction, including concrete surface plug, top slab and well cap, $300
- Surge testing until water is clean and test pumping. $1545
- Full chemical and bacteriological analysis of well water. $180
- Pump, control panels, underground cables, switches, solar panels and back up generator $15,700 (25,585)
- Anti-microbial 2300 liter water tank and water tower $850
- Standard circular 5000 liter water tank with concrete slab $500
- Community water filling station build out $2,100
Install a standard water tank with a simple spigot, placed on a poured concrete slab circle. Connect a collection system at the top of the tank to direct, filter and collect clean rainwater from the hospital roof. This will provide the hospital caretaker and his family with a clean water source for drinking, cooking and washing.
Buy and install the anti-microbial water tank and water tower for storage of well water to service the hospital.
Drill the well and install the pump
Connect well and pump into the hospital.