Friendly Water for the World has branched out to work with communities on implementing multiple water-centered technologies, including BioSand water filters, rainwater catchments, MicroFlush toilets, interlocking stabilized soil blocks, multipurpose soap, rocket stoves, and permagardens. Critical to Friendly Water’s work is that communities get to prioritize the programs they wish to pursue.
Recently, in Matsakha, Kenya, more than 100 people, including the leaders of ten different villages (most of whom had never met each other before) came together for three full days of community engagement activities. Through a process of appreciative inquiry, they were able to enumerate the community assets they could bring to any undertaking and evaluate which technologies best fit their community (they want all of them). They then formed their own development group and chose to start with multipurpose soap.
Schools are reopening, but many lack a source for clean water and have limited or poor-quality soap for handwashing, both critical in times of COVID-19. Community members are now trained to make soap, and they are utilizing a sustainability plan mutually developed by all the program partners. Friendly Water is planning to partner with the people of Matsakha on more technologies, such as building their own rainwater catchment tanks that connect to their school buildings and provide schools with their own source of water for the first time.
Learn more: Friendly Water for the World