Water is Life - Kenya

Newark Rotary's district grant project to supply the generator and pump for a water well in Kenya is going just fine and we see light at the end of the tunnel. Since last June, we spoke to nine Rotary clubs in the district and contacted another half dozen by telephone to find seven financial partner clubs and four individual Rotarians to reach our target goal of $16,300 (including the grant). The drill rig will be set up by the end of January and progress on the ground in Kenya, under the oversight of Water is Life Kenya based in Newark, Delaware, should move quickly thereafter. The project final report will be submitted by June 1 to the district grant committee for approval before funds are spent. Finally, when the well becomes operational there will be a celebration online with Rotary and Kenya partners! Stay tuned to join us. 

2/22/24 Lostieti Update:

We have drilled down to 152 meters (498 feet) and are happy with the water flow. The water is clear, not salty, and very tasty--all promising things! We will do the test pumping (which consists of 24 hours of continuous pumping to determine capacity) this coming Monday/Tuesday. This will move us closer to a quote for the pump and generator.

As the drilling took place, our team went around and conducted interviews. We learned that the round trip of fetching water was (still is) an average of 6 hours round-trip. Women travel to a dried up seasonal river bed and "scoop" to get water -- like kids digging in sand on the beach. About 1/3 of the time, there isn't any water at this site, so they have to keep moving and scooping elsewhere. Other times, there were wild animals who either occupied the watering holes or left droppings to contaminate the water. It is also very congested with people.

We also learned that this community is in very bad straits after the drought. There's very little livestock around as many have died. Our friend Michael had 60 cows before the drought--now he has 3. People have very little money, with maize being the only food many people eat every day.

All of this to say--when the water was coming out of the ground, there were a lot of happy faces. This project will truly transform their lives. Not only that, but it will undoubtedly be "Water Plus" -- in the coming months/years, we will surely be training their livestock keepers on how to manage their assets, boost their economy, and make the most of their newly-available water.

2/19/24 UPDATE: On Monday, February 19, 2024, the drill rig reached the site in Kenya. After a few days of drilling, the work is going extremely well. Clean water has been reached with a good flow rate. Deeper drilling will ensure water during long stretches of drought.