With water scarcity being a challenge for schools across southeast Kenya, many children are often required to bring water with them from home. Representatives from Kyumbe Primary School share how their school water tank has relieved this burden and helped children to enjoy school again.

Kyumbe Primary School is found in Kitui County, southeast Kenya. The school suffers from a host of challenges due to a poor local development network and the lack of a reliable water source for the school population.

The school community has been supported by Excellent Development, in collaboration local partners, the Africa Sand Dam Foundation (ASDF), in the construction of a rainwater storage tank at the school site. The project sought to solve water and hygiene-related challenges that faced the school pupils during their pursuit of academic success.

A visit to the school demonstrated joy and renewed hope from the community with regards to water access at the school. Some were kind enough to share their opinions about the new project with us.

John Kimanzi has been the school headteacher for the last five years and told us of the struggles he has witnessed during this time.

"Since we could not provide a reliable water source at school, we had to ask pupils and parents to bring water with them to support with cooking, feeding, and for other water needs. Despite this, the water provided has never been enough and neither has it been from trusted sources."

Mr Kimanzi goes on to tell us his view of how the water storage tank will make a difference for the school.

John Kimanzi - Head teacher of Kyumbe Primary School"With this water tank, the school will now be able to collect and store enough water for the community needs of drinking, cooking, washing of facilities and watering trees."

John Kimanzi, Headteacher of Kyumbe Primary School, southeast Kenya.

"The tank will help us to increase attendance levels, as pupils have in the past failed to attend school because of the burden of carrying water" says Mr Kimanzi.

Kalimi Musyoka, 13-years-old, has been a pupil at Kyumbe Primary School for the last seven years. She shared with us her experiences of having to bring water to school during this time.

"Carrying water in 5 litre containers has been a big burden to us, making walking to school a hard affair. Those who failed to bring water were punished, making life in school very hard. The water was also never enough and led to a lack of drinking water and poor latrine conditions."

Miss Musyoka continued by sharing her perspective on the impacts of the school water tank project:

Kalimi Musyoka - Student of Kyumbe Primary School"With this new water tank, life in school will be more fun and enjoyable. There will be enough water for drinking and many pupils will love attending school on a daily basis."

Kalimi Musyoka, Student at Kyumbe Primary School, southeast Kenya.

"The hand washing facilities will help to keep high levels of hygiene in school, which will reduce cases of stomach problems and increase concentration in class. We are thankful to the donors who supported us with this project" concluded Miss Musyoka.

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