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.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Exciting Times at Ebukwala

Thomas Wells

Hello from Ebukwala!

Hanging out in Kenya has been an awesome experience for me thus far, in spite of my pasty white skin having been fried by the extra-strength Kenyan sun and my newly developed fear of giant beetles (apparently,I can scream at glass shattering frequencies).

So, Kenya is great, and we’re making great progress developing a composting latrine here at Ebukwala Primary School. We met with the teachers and school management board of the school on Monday and then took them on a tour of a past composting latrine on Tuesday. Everyone seems very positive (perhaps because they’re getting something), but we have also faced some tough questions about the maintenance of the latrine itself.

The idea of composting human waste is a very new one, both here and in the US, and selling people on that idea is no easy task. It seems that the community will take ownership of the project, as they all seemed interested, and the meeting with the parents today was PACKED. We plan to break ground on the project next week, so it is very exciting.

In other news, we’ve been hanging around with our Kenyan translators, Stella, James, Joseck, and Winnie. They’re a bunch of great people who we relate to very well (it’s nice to hang out with other 20 somethings, especially since all the people we work with at schools are older than us). James in particular started right off asking me questions about biblical allusion and The Merchant of Venice, which I read several years ago and was not expecting to field questions about outside of the classroom. I hope I represented my education well. [Editor's Note: Thomas is an English major.]


That’s all I really have for now, I need to go fall into a food coma after stuffing myself with chapatti.

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