News Story

Clean Water Brings Hope and Comfort

This was a wonderful day for students, parents, and school administrators in Kakamega District in northwestern Kenya. Completion and turnover of water and sanitation projects was celebrated at a ceremony held at the Ebutunyi Primary School, Lunza Division, Kakamega County. The completed projects targeted fifteen schools where each received rain harvesting equipment and latrines. Twenty-five springs were protected in the Lunza division. One borehole was improved at Ituti Primary School and a new one was drilled near the Ukaka Area. These projects were funded by LDS Charities and implemented by Reach the Children. Prior to the celebration brief visits were made to the completed projects.

The Area Education Officer, Rita Katumu, provided a summary of the number of students in the project areas as follows: 68 nursery schools with 17,000 enrolled; 39 primary schools with 21,000 students; 16 secondary schools with 7,500 students.

Silvia Onga, a member of the local Parent Teacher Association stated “I am very happy because, as a parent, the LDS Charities program is a great help to me and my children by providing adequate sanitary resources”.

At Lukaka the spring that was captured just above the river bed provides clean water to a large community of users who transport the fresh, clean water from the spring to their homes.

At the turn-over ceremony, Ms. Katumu offered her thanks for sanitary facilities and her hope that these new water and sanitation resources will eliminate the anxiety of the children who previously have had to use substandard facilities. Their concerns have had a detrimental effect on the children and their instruction. Mr. Isaac Kuya, the District Education Office, gave a special thanks to LDS Charities for providing projects that will help education through clean hands/clean water within the district. He concluded his remarks with “Thank you and God bless you for what you have done”.

Mr. Jacob Akhonya, representing the Honorable Wycliff Ambetsa Oparanya, the Minister for Planning, gave thanks to Elder and Sister Harris and LDS Charities. He stated that the need exists for latrines in 30 additional schools. He also described the need for more rain harvesting equipment that would have a great impact for the water projects. He also “gave thanks to the generous members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in other countries who have donated money to fund these projects”.

At the conclusion of the ceremony both Morgan Harris (Country Director for LDS Charities) and Gideon Matwale delivered talks that were both entertaining as well as informative about the Church and it’s humanitarian work. Then followed the traditional dancing ceremonies in which all present were invited to participate.

Since 1985, LDS Charities of the Church of Jesus-Christ of Latter-day Saints, often referred to as the "Mormon" church, has provided more than $1.5 billion in assistance to nearly 30 million people in 179 countries.

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