Karibu! Welcome!

Since 2004, EWB@ MSU's professional and student volunteers have worked with community members in Khwisero, Kenya to provide water and sanitation infrastructure at the district's 58 primary schools, making it easier for Khwisero's children to avoid waterborne disease and get an education.

In that time, the group has grown from a small club to one of MSU's premier student organizations, raising hundreds of thousands of dollars to fund seven borehole wells, six composting latrines and a biogas latrine that serve thousands of community members.

Thank you for joining us as we continue to work hand-in-hand with local partners to make a difference in one small part of our world. As Western Kenya's limited internet access allows, we will update this blog while in-country with the successes, stories and lessons provided by our work.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Team Member Check-In: Matt

Hello Everyone,

My name is Matt Smith, I am a Helena High School graduate and am in my fourth year at MSU with majors in Business Management and Philosophy. As many people point out right away, "That's an interesting mix! What do you do with EWB?" Well, I traveled last summer with EWB in order to research the socio-economic and political systems in Khwisero, Kenya and search for basic poverty alleviation interventions that could be associated with our existing water and sanitation projects. I have been an active student at MSU for the past several years and have been fortunate enough to work with local, state and federal policy as well as organizations ranging from student clubs, to large public and small private entities.

This trip we are going to focus on the social mechanisms in order to ensure project sustainability by working to build the capacity of our Kenyan Board of Directors and conglomerated Pipeline Management Committee. Additionally, we will connect and empower local landowners, of which the pipeline will directly affect, with the local politicians and government officials. We will engage these stake-holding entities by holding small-training sessions, development meetings and large listening sessions to engage community members and all other involved parties.

Hope you follow our progress, as we have heard rumors that Khwisero just got dial-up internet access (it takes a while for gossip to get over the Atlantic), if not, we'll be posting from an internet-cafe in Kisumu , off the coast of Lake Victoria.

Thank you for your support and interest,


1 comment:

Jodie DeLay said...

Great picture, Matt. Have fun and thanks for keeping us informed of your adventures!