Mkuu Water Project

Project LocationMeru District, Kenya
Project TypeWater resource management
Benefiting Locally3,000

Mkuu Water Project

The Kitima Kia Mukuu (Fig Tree Spring) Water Project is a good example of the community led projects that Tusk has funded. The spring provides a strategic water source for a Meru community in the Kithima district of northern Kenya. The area is arid, savannah grassland, which receives very little annual rainfall. The Mukuu spring is therefore essential for the survival of both the 3,000 people and the livestock in the Kithima area.

For many years, the spring was not managed and, as a result, cattle were watered, clothes were washed, and people bathed and drank, all from the same source. Consequently, the water became badly polluted and water borne diseases seriously affected the Mukuu community and neighbouring communities down stream. In addition, erosion due to overgrazing drastically reduced the water supply and communities were often in conflict over access to the water.

Mkuu Water Project

With generous support from a Tusk donor, a very simple, energy efficient, technology has been installed to provide a solution. A concrete weir was constructed downstream from the eye of the spring and an environmentally friendly water wheel pump was installed. Powered by the wheel, an underground delivery pipe channels water form the source to a holding tank which, in turn, feeds livestock troughs, clothes washing sinks and an ablution block. A stand pipe is also provides a nearby source for clean drinking water. Most of the water is diverted down stream to maintain the flow and provide a lifeline to other communities.

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