Improving collection of water - Elerai, Tanzania

Following a project by the United Nations Development Program, we're building 3 new tanks for much needed water storage.


April 15th 2013: The Kesho Trust has crafted a very beautiful and rich final report on the project, which was completed in february and march 2013 the three water collection tanks were built. 
December 5th 2012: A few days ago we received this update on the progress that has been made for the water collection project. In this progress report, Help Every Day is represented by the Kesho Trust since our funding has been directed to the Kesho Trust who are financing the total project.


We're proud and happy to report that our Coins of Compassion have now been given to this great proejct, and that work will begin shortly to build three important storage tanks. We will post reports on this project directly to this site.

Project resume

- Water is the most critical problem in the Maasai community of Elerai, located in Kilindi District of Tanzania.
- It falls on the shoulders of Maasai women to collect water for domestic purposes.
- By Increasing the quantity of water collection capacity, our goal is to reduce the heavy burden of spending countless hours on collecting water over long distances.
- This will empower women by leaving time and energy for education (especially young girls) and income generation for their families. 

Help Every Day’s Relationship with The Kesho Trust

Help Every Day is working with the Kesho Trust on the development of a rainwater harvesting system for the Tanzanian village of Elerai, located in the Kilindi District of central Tanzania. Rainwater harvesting systems will be built for public buildings in the community, with rainwater collected for the communal use of the entire village. This project builds upon a previously completed UNDP-funded project, which developed 30 rainwater harvesting tanks serving 1,788 people in 26 bomas (homesteads) in the community, and 461 students in two local schools.

Help Every Day is very proud to be a partner with the Kesho Trust – an international organization established as a Canadian charity. Kesho Trust’s Founding Director, Bruce Downie, and Help Every Day’s Jesse Baltutis met through the community of environmental conservationists at the University of Victoria, BC. Both Bruce and Jesse share a passion for environmental issues – within Canada and abroad. Upon meeting, both also recognized an immediate connection between Help Every Day and the Kesho Trust, and look forward to a long-term relationship between the two organizations.

What is the challenge that Kesho Trust and their partner needs help to resolve?

Elerai village, like many Maasai communities are often located at considerable distances from town centres, where government supplied water services are located, it falls on the shoulders of Maasai women to collect water for domestic purposes. Thus the women of Elerai have to walk on average 6 or 7 kilometres to Kibirashi, the nearest town for water for their families and community. Here they are met with long line ups at the few water points and often are in conflict over water with the other town women.

Our partnership with the Kesho Trust will address the challenge described above through…

Through increasing the quantity of water collection capacity in the village by utilizing the collection area of public building roofs, the goal is to reduce the time required by women and girls in the community to spend collecting water from distant town centres.

Long-term impact

- Empowerment of women through the reduction of daily chores that would allow greater attention to education [especially for girls] and income generation for them and their families
- Development of permanent settlements and claim to associated lands made increasingly possible and sustainable through the development and use of permanent facilities such as rainwater harvesting systems
- Improved health and sanitation for families with easier and more dependable access to water

Project in details

Water is the most critical problem in the Maasai community of Elerai, located in Kilindi District of Tanzania. The Kesho Trust’s partner in Tanzania, Ereto Maasai Youth (EMAYO), developed a rainwater harvesting and storage project in Elerai with assistance from UNDP in 2008-2009, which developed thirty tanks at various bomas in the community. The main objective of the project was to reduce the length of time spent by pastoral women and girls on water collection and help them to use that time for other development activities especially around education and income generation.

Existing metal roofs on public buildings in the community of Elerai are under-utilized for rainwater collection and have the potential to collect significant quantities. Through funds provided by Help Every Day, and in partnership with EMAYO and the Kesho Trust, an expanded rainwater harvesting collection system will add to the storage capacity already in existence from the bomas-based system. The technology is understood and people have been trained in the village in the construction and maintenance of these facilities.

Unlike the boma-based collection systems, use of public buildings has an added complication of water allocation management. This project would see storage tanks built and gutters added to public buildings for rainwater collection. A water allocation management group would be established to oversee the allocation of water resources. This group would be made up of women as it is the women that are responsible for the collection and management of domestic water supplies. According to established village management practice, this group would be responsible to the village committee who would ensure the management was being carried out effectively. The village committee consists of both men and women of equal numbers and equal say.

Water collected in this communal system would be used for domestic use only. The following guidelines have been proposed for water supply from public buildings:
a) water for children at school at lunch time;
b) drinking water for community meetings; and
c) applications for individuals for emergency use unable to collect water because of illness (excluded from such emergency application would be those with their own tank, or those with a motor bike for transporting water).

Background information about Kesho Trust

The Kesho Trust works to build community based understanding and action that strengthens the interrelationships between people and the natural environment. Community interests guide our work and help us to develop programs that facilitate, support and build the capacity of local community actors and organizations.

The Kesho Trust believes in empowerment through partnerships. Partnering local community based organizations is a critical factor in the success of grass-roots development initiatives. The intention of our partnerships is to strengthen and expand the capacity of local organizations over the longer term and by doing so not only enable them to sustain their development initiatives into the future but also enable us to learn and share from them their experiences and skills.
Please take a moment to learn more about the Kesho Trust at


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