“We are very happy with Pentair’s support; this project was a helping hand at the right time.’’
- Mr. Mohamed Godana, the local Administration Chief in Eldera
In the arid region of Garbatulla Sub-County, Isiolo County, Kenya, seasonal rains that provide water for drinking, hygiene and farming usually arrive in early October. In 2013, these rains were delayed for more than a month, causing alarming water shortages.
People in Garbatulla rely on water holes and rivers for seasonal water supplies. But when no rains had come and their usual seasonal water sources dried up, communities had few resources available. The alternative was to buy water from sellers, but prices skyrocketed from 3 Kenyan shillings (3 cents USD) to 50 kshs (58 cents USD) per 20-liter jerry can. The population in Garbatulla living on less than $1 USD a day, and these water prices drained the poorest and most vulnerable people in the affected communities.
When the growing need for water became too much for County water authorities, Action Against Hunger, with the support of Pentair, stepped in over a three week period to help in three communities: Duse, Eldera, and Modogashe.
Pentair’s support helped Action Against Hunger provide essential water services for an estimated 3,700 people!
Action Against Hunger team members worked with local government officials, community leaders, and existing water committee members in Garbatulla Sub-County to develop a water trucking plan for the three target locations.
A daily water supply schedule was developed for each location, which was based on daily water requirements for each person over a 14 day period. The daily targets were:
- Eldera: 6,000 liters
- Duse: 9,750 liters
- Modogashe: 39,990 liters
Water delivery in Modogashe.
By November, less than one month after the start of the crisis, trucks began delivering water. Local community members in each location were trained to facilitate water trucking. Together with local water committee members, these volunteers coordinated, monitored and recorded the quantity of water delivered to each community.
Table 2 (above) provides a summary of the water quantities trucked to each location compared to the amount of water that was projected as the requirement.
Community members in Modogashe fetch water from a neaby storage tank.
Mr. Adan Wario Arero and his family were among the community members who received water in Duse location from Pentair project. Mr. Adan noted the situation was dire before water trucking: while some households could afford to buy water, others could not, and the only solution to share what little water there was available. He praised the water trucking project:
“The emergency water trucking reduced the burden on my family to pay for expensive water. We used to pay a lot of money for water. Sometimes my wife had to go look for water very far away while I had to work, leaving my children behind without a caretaker. But we were lucky when we received water from the Pentair project, because my wife can stay with our children and fetch free water from the distribution tank, which is close to our home.”
- Adan Wario Arero, father and community member, Duse
Other benefits mentioned by community members interviewed include:
- Availability of water for health and hygiene practices
- Reduced diarrhea incidences among children
- More money available to buy food instead of water
- Availability of water for local schools, which helps maintain school food programs and allows children to return to school
- Return of community members who had left to find water elsewhere
Community leaders in Duse, Eldera, and Modogashe expressed their appreciation for the water trucking in letters to Action Against Hunger's staff, like this one from the Office of the Chief in Eldera:
Water trucking was a critical short-term measure to ensure the health of people in Duse, Eldera, and Modogashe. When the rains started, water trucking concluded. People in the affected communities can now obtain water from natural sources.
Thanks to Pentair’s generosity, Action Against Hunger and local partner organizations were able to provide critical emergency water services to some 3,700 people across Garbatulla Sub-County. We thank Pentair for their commitment to our partnership, and to communities we serve in Kenya and around the world.