SWASH+ Kenya was developed from a pilot initiative funded by the Coca Cola Africa Foundation. The initiative began in 2005, when the Millennium Water Alliance, CARE, Water.org (formerly Water Partners International), and Kenya-based SANA implemented a school and community WASH project. SWASH+ Kenya’s current partners are CARE, Emory University’s Center for Global Safe Water, Water.org, and the Kenya Water and Health Organisation. It is funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Global Water Challenge
SWASH+ Top Ten Findings – 2012
1 – IMPACT ON ABSENTEEISM— Schools in two geographic clusters that received a water treatment and hygiene promotion intervention had a 58% reduction in girls’ absence or an average reduction of six days per year per girl (controlling for grade and age). The same intervention had no effect on boys’ absenteeism.
2 – COMMUNITY BEHAVIOUR CHANGE— Household water treatment in communities increased with the initiation of school WASH. The increase was significant, but modest. School WASH interventions should be combined with
other programs more specifically targeted to parents and families for optimal behaviour change in communities.
3 – SUSTAINABILITY— Three years after implementing the Safe Water System (SWS) school WASH intervention, only 36% of schools continued to provide drinking water and only 9% had measurable levels of chlorine in their drinking water. Inappropriate technology, cost, limited access to water and lack of institutional support are among the key barriers to long-term provision of safe water at schools.
4 – DIARRHEAL DISEASE— Among schools in the water ‘scarce’ group (schools without a dry season water source within 1km), provision of a comprehensive school-based WASH intervention was effective in reducing the risk of diarrheal disease by 66%. The significant overall reduction in diarrhea prevalence was similar for boys and girls; however, diarrhea prevalence was not impacted at schools without water supply improvements and who only were provided water treatment and/or sanitation.