A Milestone Partnership: Cohesu and LIONS Club Uplifting Ngeta Primary School
Nestled amidst the modest neighborhood homes, Ngeta Primary School is a beacon of hope and learning for local children aged between 6 and 14. With an enrolment of 279 pupils, comprising 135 boys and 144 girls, the school has six teachers and four support staff committed to guiding these young minds. Most of the students come from economically disadvantaged families residing in the vicinity of the school. Despite its makeshift infrastructure, especially in the pre-primary segment where children between 4-5 years learn in classrooms with iron sheets and mud floors, the school relentlessly pursues its educational mission.
Water is a key challenge at Ngeta Primary School. The institution is primarily reliant on three local pans - Kabiero East, Koriko, and Kibaga - which collect and store untreated runoff water. Every day, students embark on their school journeys with containers to collect water for use throughout the day.
Further compounding the school's issues is sanitation, or lack thereof. Ngeta Primary School has just two toilets for its 279 students and one for its teachers, making it a pressing concern. The geographical peculiarities and soil type around the lake make construction difficult, posing a risk of collapse if not handled by skilled contractors.
In the face of these challenges, Cohesu, with support from Lions Club Worms, Germany, proposed a pilot project to provide safe water to Ngeta Primary School. Due to funding limitations, this initiative's first phase couldn't include toilets. However, it introduced a lifeline in the form of a PAUL filter (Portable Aqua Unit for Lifesaving). This robust, user-friendly system that works without energy consumption, chemicals, or additives can supply potable water for approximately 400 people per day. It has been a game-changer for the students and staff of Ngeta Primary School, enabling them to access safe water at school and carry some back home.
This project's success hinged on buy-in from the school management. Hence, we started with stakeholder meetings involving the school head and board members, ensuring their support and gathering valuable insights about the issues at hand.