Lack of access to clean water and sanitation is widespread in low-income communities in Kenya’s growing cities.
Rapid urbanisation has left Kenyan cities unable to cope with the huge demand for basic services such as water and sanitation.
Some 15 million city dwellers lack access to a piped water supply or sanitation services, and this number continues to rise.
The impact this has on health is severe – across Kenya, around 20,000 people die each year from diarrhoea, most of which is directly attributed to poor water, sanitation and hygiene.
Since 2006, we have worked closely with local service providers and national institutions in Kenya to improve water and sanitation services to low-income urban communities.
We work in the capital Nairobi as well as in Naivasha, Mombasa, Nakuru, Kisumu and Malindi.
We have become a trusted partner to Nairobi City Water and Sewerage Company (NCWSC), helping it to establish and grow a department which specifically focuses on low-income communities. We have achieved similar change with the local utility in Mombasa, MOWASSCO, and with the utilities Naivass in Naivasha and Nawassco in Nakuru.
These close relationships have enabled us to increase services for city-dwellers. As part of the DFID-funded SWIFT Consortium, we have worked in Dandora, Nairobi, to lay 23km of new pipeline and improve access to safe water connections in the area for 52,000 people.
And in Korogocho and Kahawa Soweto – both areas in Nairobi – we have been working with the support of OFID and Borealis to bring improved and affordable water access services to 56,000 inhabitants. In Karagita in Naivasha, our model for creating regulated service provision arrangements, which involves building relationships between borehole owners, asset owners and utilities, has been replicated in partnership with the World Bank and others across Naivasha sub-county.
How water kiosks are providing jobs for Kenyan women
In Naivasha, WSUP and The Coca-Cola Africa Foundation have collaborated to increase safe access to water, benefiting 44,000 people.
Elizabeth Wambui is a resident of Naivasha and she is now working to manage one of the new water kiosks. We have provided Elizabeth with training to help her operate the water kiosk successfully. Watch the video:
Influencing the regulatory environment
A crucial aspect of our work is creating an environment which incentivises utilities to provide services to the most vulnerable. A significant achievement for us was therefore in 2015, when WASREB, the national Kenyan regulator, developed a key performance indicator to monitor the performance of utilities in reaching low-income communities. We believe that this will encourage utilities to further improve their services to residents in these areas.
In Kenya so far...
people with improved water services
people with improved sanitation services
people with improved hygiene practices
Between 2016-2020, our aim is to reach over 2 million urban residents across Kenya with improved water, sanitation and hygiene services.
In order to realise our vision, we need £9 million. Should you wish to partner with us in our work, please get in touch with us.