The water and sanitation crisis in Kenya remains critical. With a population of 46 million, 41 percent of Kenyans still rely on unimproved water sources, such as ponds, shallow wells and rivers.

The community of Kanjoo access water from the river for domestic use, farming practices and personal consumption. Waterborne illness and disease are rife. During the summer months, there are long periods of drought so women and children must walk 5 km or more to fetch water.

Project Aims:

  • Improve the availability of clean, safe drinking water in an environmentally sustainable way.
  • Reduce the risk of water-related infections and diseases.
  • Free up valuable time for women and children

The Hummingbird Initiative’s first fund-raising project was for the drilling of a borehole to provide clean water for the school and the wider community.

A hydrogeological survey was carried out by Geocore, Nairobi in March 2018, and collaboratively, with The Born Free Foundation (, the required amount of money was then raised to begin the project.

However, in December 2018 the local council announced that they were starting an initiative themselves to provide clean water to all primary schools within the Meru district. This would ultimately be the preferred outcome as there are obvious advantages to this:

  • Access to this water would be free as the running costs and maintenance would be the responsibility of the local authority
  • Ownership of water provision would belong directly with the Meru County municipality. Finding local solutions to local problems.

Presently, The Hummingbird Initiative are in constant contact with government officials from Meru to monitor progress with regards to a start date. They have assured us that work will begin by April 2020 but if by this time the work has not begun, The Hummingbird Initiative, in collaboration with our partners, will begin the drilling of the borehole.

However, if work does begin by this time, we will re-allocate the funds to other water related projects within the community. There is still a need for access to water in the more remote parts of the community for domestic use and for irrigation. It is important to get the first borehole up and running first however to assess its impact on the water table.

To find out more about the technical specifications and installation information of a borehole see: