What's in our January 2020 issue: Notes from the Field – Water Works; Water is Life; Yes! YOU are Making a World of Difference, a World Away; You Had Me at the Title; Meet P4P Volunteer Wesley Hill; Big Smiles All Around ; “Hello, Gorgeous!” Funny Girl is Coming to the Civic
You will never solve poverty without solving water and sanitation.~ Matt Damon
Notes from the Field – Water Works
By Nereah Obura, P4P Kenya Program Coordinator
Dear P4P Friend,
Water tanks have been delivered to the following locations: Boya Primary School, Kopanga Msoera Dispensary, Lorena Special School and Ogada Girls School.
Each institution is expected to build the gutter and base for the tanks. Partnering for Progress purchases the tanks and has them delivered to the appropriate locations. Lorena School finished their installation several days ago and their tank already has collected some water. The other tanks will start collecting water soon.
Lorena School for the Deaf water catchment tank
Lorena Special School is dedicated to serving deaf children, a population that is not usually reached through the schools. Eight children from all over Migori county attend the school and all are boarders. The school’s previous 5,000-liter tank was inadequate and often ran dry, forcing the children to walk to Nyamthong’no Spring to haul untreated water back to the school. This put these already vulnerable children’s lives at risk of contracting water borne diseases, and it took time from their studies and other learning activities.
We hope that the January rains will be enough to fill all the tanks.
How much water do you use in a day? From your morning coffee to your daily shower, to cooking, cleaning, flushing the toilet, to watering the lawn?
A few gallons, you think? Try 60. The average American consumes an astounding average of 60 gallons of water every day.
Now imagine the women in your family walking blocks, even miles, to collect enough water for the family’s daily needs. The women leave early in the morning, balancing an empty five-gallon jug of water on their heads. On the walk back, the jug is full. It weighs about 41 pounds.
The United Nations estimates that a person needs about 50 liters of water per day for hygiene and cooking, which is a bit more than 13 gallons. People in rural Africa are trying to survive on less than 20 liters (5.2 gallons) a day. And those liters are often collected from unimproved sources, meaning the water could carry pathogens that cause illness. In poverty-prone areas where health is often already compromised, contaminated water can kill.
P4P has focused on three programs to mitigate water shortages.
We have created sustainable spring projects that are protected from animal contamination and require little effort to maintain.
We have assisted groups who already have a borehole (well) that needs improving. Small fees are collected from users to provide for future repairs as needed.
We have installed 10,000-liter rainwater catchment tanks at schools and clinics around the villages we serve. A total of nineteen tanks are in place, with the concrete base and roof gutters provided by the schools and clinics. This solution requires very little maintenance or repair and relies on rainfall to fill the tanks.
After experiencing the benefit and success of these projects, the residents in the 26 villages in our service area have learned how to create their own safe water projects.
P4P Program Coordinator Nereah Obura lives in Kopanga during the week, returning to her family (and her community borehole) in Kisumu on the weekends. In Kopanga, Nereah captures rainwater for personal use – an economical alternative to purchasing water. We commend Nereah for her creativity and sacrifices to serve the people of Kopanga and Ogada.
Yes! YOU are Making a World of Difference, a World Away
Thanks to donations from individual supporters, family foundations, scholarship sponsors and companies large and small, P4P raised over $19,000 in 2019 annual appeal. This outpouring of generosity ensures our work will continue to bless those in need in Kenya.
Thanks to you, P4P installed four rainwater catchment tanks. The children and teachers in these schools will now be able to collect safe drinking water. Instead of spending valuable school hours walking to nearby water sources to get enough water for the day, they can focus on learning.
Six students excelled in eighth grade but lacked the financial resources to pursue high school. You stepped in with scholarships and now 23 high school students and seven college students are attending school in 2020, thanks to your support. To date, you have helped 25 students graduate from high school and two have graduated from college.
Six students gratefully received scholarships to attend high school thanks to YOU!
Every single week, 30 malnourished infants receive nutritional supplements to help them grow into lively toddlers. Their parents receive a healthy meal and education about a health topic important to children. Upon graduation, parents receive two chickens, and the eggs those chickens lay increase the family’s protein supply.
Two sets of 10 farmers received robust seeds, agriculture education and enough fertilizer to raise bountiful crops that will support their families throughout the year. When farm families have a little extra money, how do you imagine they spend it? On school fees, food and medical care. P4P is also training them to save for the following year’s crops, seeds and fertilizer.
Three new small business groups are spending grant funds to grow their businesses, and we are exploring sustainable business plans to spin off profits to support projects long term.
YOU reached out to those with few options and opportunities.
YOU shared resources and hope for our partners in 26 villages.
Click to donate via PayPal. Send checks to Partnering for Progress PO Box 28191 Spokane, WA 99228 or call (509)720-8408 for donations by credit card. Thank you!
You Had Me at the Title
P4P volunteer and Board of Directors chair Gordon Jackson recently released a novel, Never Say Moist at Wyndover College. Gordon weaves a satirical, cautionary tale about censorship. When a young student whose intense dislike of the word "moist" complains to the administration, she sets in motion a train of events that allows all of students at the small college to ban whatever words they find offensive.
One cannot help but think the title alone is Gordon’s way of poking the bear.
“Having grown up in South Africa during the apartheid era, we all experienced censorship firsthand, and when I came to the US, it was like breathing intellectual fresh air,” Gordon says.
“My 32 years of teaching at Whitworth was, fortunately, in a setting that didn't require us to mollycoddle our students, but that is what many college and university campuses are now gravitating towards.”
Chip Stewart, professor of journalism at Texas Christian University reviewed Never Say Moist and said, “The modern campus speech climate is easy to mock, but Jackson gives it a clever skewering that isn’t overly mean or dismissive. The result is a story of what may happen when well-meaning students and risk-adverse administrators give a right to not be offended the highest priority.”
Moist is Gordon’s second novel and fourteenth print book. It is available at Auntie’s Bookstore in Spokane and on Amazon.
Meet P4P Volunteer Wesley Hill
By Renée Sande
Ask P4P volunteer Wesley Hill what about his favorite pastimes, and he may respond, “Snuggling with Brett Favre.”
However, he may follow that with, “And of course, my other cat, Lancaster, and my husband, Ben.”
Luckily for P4P, in addition to his love of both his felines and his hubby, Wesley has a love of Africa, which is where he attended grad school, at the University of Cape Town. During his time there, Wesley was involved in water and sanitation projects.
“When I moved to Spokane with Ben three and a half years ago and found out about P4P, I jumped at the chance to join the water committee. I particularly enjoy helping to decipher Kenyan water policies and governance structures.”
Originally from East Texas, Wesley moved to Portland, Oregon, in 2007, before heading to Cape Town, where he lived for two years. When his husband secured a position with Spokane Public Schools, the pair found themselves back in the Pacific Northwest, an area he says fits their life style well. Name anything outdoors and they’re most likely doing it, from backpacking to canoeing and snowboarding.
Wesley just recently left a job at ROW Adventures where he was working as a travel and operations coordinator for their programs in Cuba. He is currently interviewing for program coordination roles at area local non-profit organizations.
When asked what Wesley likes most about Partnering for Progress, he echoed a sentiment that seems to resonate with the people involved with P4P at all different levels.
“I appreciate the sense of community within the organization and the approach we take toward building partnerships in Kenya.”
We’ve been reminding all of you Amazon shoppers that you can help raise funds for P4P by enrolling in AmazonSmile program. Apparently, you’ve been listening.
In 2019, purchases by Smile shoppers netted the highest yearly amount yet: $263.21. The total received in the four years P4P has participated in Smile is $937.31. That is an amazing sum, especially considering that it takes little staff time and no volunteer effort to raise these funds. Thank you, shoppers!
Our Smile supporters tell us they use Smile for everything from gifts to necessities to office supplies. Next time your office needs equipment, ink cartridges, paper or other supplies, consider enrolling in AmazonSmile.
For the uninitiated, this is how AmazonSmile works. Go to http://smile.amazon.com and register your name along with Partnering for Progress. Then whenever you make a purchase, enter smile.amazon.com (NOT Amazon.com) in your browser and make your purchase(s). Amazon will donate 0.5% of your purchase price to P4P. Quick, easy, effective. We like that.
“Hello, Gorgeous!” Funny Girl is Coming to the Civic
Save the date: June 3, 2020. P4P is partnering with the Spokane Civic Theatre for a lively fundraising performance of Funny Girl. If you missed it on Broadway, you probably caught the 1968 movie which earned Barbra Streisand an Oscar for her starring role. The bittersweet musical is loosely based on the life and career of Broadway and film star and comedian Fanny Brice whose started her career as a Ziegfeld girl and rose to stardom on Broadway in the 1920s.