About the Community
The community of Kikoo has historically collected water from local streams contaminated with human and animal waste, resulting in a high incidence of water-borne diseases, especially in young children. Boiling water and rainwater collection are not sustainable sources of drinking water due to the cost and scarcity of fuels, and the lack of precipitation during the 6-month dry season. In 2006, the village began working with the Social Welfare Department of the Catholic Diocese in the nearby city of Kumbo to begin clearing and constructing a catchment for a clean water project, organizing a Water Committee, and raising funds for materials.
A Gravity-Fed Water Distribution System
The goal of the original project was to construct a gravity-fed water distribution system for Kikoo in order to provide the community with a clean and sustainable source of water. A clean spring was located and tapped to act as the source of the community’s water. The catchment area around the spring has been designated as a protected area to preserve the integrity of the spring source and was donated to the community by the landlord. The distribution system currently includes a series of catchment and transport tanks: a 20,000 L primary storage tank, a 12,000 L secondary storage tank, and twelve public standpipes throughout the community. Two more standpipes (# 11 and 12) are currently being constructed.
The first two EWB-Yale trips concerned supplying the lower two-thirds of the village with water from a clean catchment source outside of the village. The third and fourth trips assessed and implemented designs to supply water to the more elevated third of Kikoo. A fifth trip occurred in March of this past year conduct a post-implementation health survey and carry out an assessment for the most recent trip’s (sixth trip) extension of our sanitation work in Kikoo: the implementation of model ventilated improved pit (VIP) latrines.