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    Posted June 19, 2014 by
    kakamega, Kenya
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    Student voices in journalism


    Despite the heavy rains that continue to pour in most parts of Western Kenya, residents of Shirongo village in Khwisero constituency, Kakamega County continue to experience water shortage. The heavy rains pouring in this area is not alleviating the problem.
    This has been a problem for over a decade. The villagers fetch water from a trench that they dug and insert a plastic gutter in the soil to collect water. The trench where the spring water passes is open and this poses a health risk to over 400 villagers consuming the water. The water is also untreated making it unsafe for consumption. The villagers have no other option but to consume the water as there are no other alternatives.
    Camelyne 22, a resident says that the villagers were forced to dig a trench to capture the water as the previous water hole in the area dried up. This is not the first time for a water source to dry up. Now the water that they fetch from the trench is so little and it can dry up any time.
    Previously, a water source was constructed to help residents’ access clean water but the water source dried up forcing the villagers to construct their own trench to get water from the spring.
    According to sources, there was a water project in Mwitseshe village which served many villagers giving them clean piped water. Water was pumped from the bore hole and supplied to villagers who had connected their pipes to the borehole. However, villagers have not received the piped water for over 4 months now. Mismanagement of the water project has led to its failure as power was disconnected from the bore hole due to irregularities in payment of electricity bills.
    This is a source of livelihood for residents in shirongo village. A plastic gutter inserted in the trench to collect the water.
    Right now, residents cannot get access to piped clean water and have to depend on the trench water for survival, putting their health at risk.

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