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Kenya. Reliable water supplies.

Improving the water supplies in northern Kenya.

Your support could help provide 10,000 people with a safe water supply and improve the quality of water for over 100,000 more.

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Your donation can do something brilliant

Your donations will help support five water providers to deliver a better quality water service to over 100,000 people, with 30 per cent of water users enjoying significant improvements by project end.

In the towns of Lodwar and Wajir, we hope to provide 10,000 with sustainable access to safe, clean drinking water.

We will help the water sector to become more transparent and accountable, and hope to increase revenue collection by 20 per cent by project end.


Nabwel Lopua fetches safe drinking water at the BluePump.

Jane Beesley

What your money can buy

could provide clean, safe drinking water to four people in Kenya.

could improve the water supply for 200 people in Kenya by supporting water providers to deliver a better service.

A bit of background

Lack of water is a recurrent and serious problem in the arid lands of Turkana and Wajir in northern Kenya. In these areas, it is common for up to 35 per cent of the population to be suffering from acute malnutrition at any one time. Malnutrition occurs when people do not absorb enough nutrients and is often caused by drinking dirty water, as people frequently suffer from vomiting and diarrhoea. Women and girls are traditionally responsible for collecting water, and most of them walk for several hours every day in searing temperatures to access it. The insufficient supply of safe water is not solely a result of the lack of rainfall in these arid regions. It is also due to the inadequate maintenance of water systems by service providers. Many providers do not collect sufficient revenues from water users to cover the costs of ongoing maintenance, which results in systems frequently being out of order. When local water pumps are out of action, women and girls have to walk further to find a working pump or seek alternative sources of water, such as by digging down in dry river beds. These alternative sources are easily contaminated and the water is often unsafe to drink, resulting in a high incidence of waterborne diseases.

How we're helping

Oxfam has significant expertise and experience of working with vulnerable people in the arid lands of northern Kenya. Over the last decade, Oxfam has focused on identifying the underlying causes of water insecurity and developing innovative solutions to ensure that people have sufficient access to water. Oxfam is promoting better governance at national and local levels to ensure that the government fulfils its responsibility to support poor people in Kenya. Building on and further strengthening work funded with UK Aid from the British people, this project will support five local water service providers to effectively manage and maintain water systems, improving the quality of the water supply for 100,000 people in Turkana and Wajir. We aim to:

  • Improve the availability of clean, safe drinking water and reduce the incidence of water-related illnesses, by installing new solar-powered water pumping systems in Turkana and Wajir.
  • Ensure the sustainability of water provision by helping water suppliers to become more efficient at delivering water and collecting user fees.
  • Help the water sector to become more transparent and accountable by building strong links between public authorities and the private sector, and sharing experiences and good practice.

Since April 2014, Oxfam in Kenya has drilled boreholes, extended pipelines, constructed water kiosks and installed solar pumping systems to provide clean water to more than 100,000 people in Turkana and Wajir. This has saved thousands of women and girls from having to walk in extreme heat to fetch water, and significantly reduced the incidence of waterborne diseases.

Look how far your money can go

However much you can afford, your donation will really change lives. Just ask the people we've already helped.

Rose Akuwam, 20, has two children and lives in Kabokorit village, Kakuma, in the arid county of Turkana. The village had a pipeline that supplied three water kiosks, but its 5,578 residents could not access water because the pipeline was damaged and so the water never reached the village.

 We could only get water by collecting it from holes we dug in the riverbed. I would get back home and people would start quarrelling because they were so thirsty.

Oxfam designed and built a pipeline that transports water directly to Kabokorit village. Now, residents can access clean water from the three water kiosks in the village, which are supplying at least 15 litres of water per person per day.

Photo: Jane Beesley/Oxfam

For every £1 you donate, we will allocate 10p of your donation to cover general support and running costs. There is a small chance that we will raise more money than is needed for this project. If this happens, we'll spend any additional funds on other Oxfam projects - wherever the need is greatest.