Monday, November 2, 2020

Rudisha Foundation's Water Project

"Somewhere along the way, we must learn that there is nothing greater than to do something for others." - Martin Luther King


The Rudisha Foundation has two main goals; to support the children in the foundation, by covering school fee costs & to help schools that require assistance in improving their services to the children. All of the school projects to date would not be possible without support from Elmwood Brant St.John's & St. Peter's Lutheran Parishes. We are most grateful for their continued support and a constant message from the teachers, children and their families is - Mungu awabariki nyote - which translates to "god blesses you all". 

We will soon sit down and chart out the next school projects to work on, but before doing so I wanted to share the great work that was done earlier this year at Mtakuja School. My mother-in-law and co-founder of the foundation, Martha, manages and oversees the projects so it's fitting that I share the emails she sends to me for this blog. 

If you are wondering how you can help support this cause I would be happy to discuss with you. Please send an email to astrowbridge@tpi.ca for any questions 😀

"Every time I go the kids just swarm the gari (truck) knowing I like to swing! 
They are so grateful for those swings!" We were fixing the original swing set that day and even the fundis (workers) wanted to swing. 

Martha (Mama Msuya) & Riziki, the headmaster of Mtakuja school


"There is more happiness in giving than in receiving." Acts 20:35

"Finally we could get started January 5th at Mtajuka School. My head fundi, Jakobu (head bldg. manager) lines up the fundis, buys the materials and holds the money once we agree on each estimate. He and the fundi travelled down that terrible washed out road, 17 kms with flooded Bajaj's (tuk tuks) to look at what needed to be done. He said the road was so flooded with motorcycles slipping & falling. It would take three stages and three estimates with several days labour and travel to complete. He would have to purchase; connectors, pipes, elbows, sockets, nipples, seals valves. He read them 'Maji Installation in Washrooms & Hand Washing' - they understood what needed to be done".

"First step was digging the trenches to each of the 14 toilet rooms, also a trench from the huge water tank, laying of the pipes and connecting them. A track in the cement wall of each toilet room for the pipe leading to the tap, this had to be pounded out. The head fundi brings along his two helpers, the meals and sleeping arrangements are on him. Jakobu’s sister Gertrude, who lives near Mtakuja school, volunteered her extra room for sleeping quarters for the fundis. Thanks to Gertrud! There’s no motel in Mtakuja, ha ha!! Just baobab trees, ditches lined with thorns and small buildings & goats walking ahead of you on the road, as you try to drive around the potholes, slowly. No water yet!"

"The second stage, estimate written on Jan 21st had more elbows, sockets, valves & seals, to build the long sink outside, a distance from the toilets. This was going to take 100 cement bricks, 4 bags cement & wire etc. plus three days’ work!"

"It had to be built high enough off the ground so the Maasai cattle wouldn’t be able to drink water from it – so the headmistress told the fundis. There’s no fence around this school yet and on weekends the herders/shepherds bring in their cattle – this is very disturbing to Riziki, the headmistress of the school who unsuccessfully tries to plant flowers and greenery outside the classrooms. The cattle strip the flowers in no time at all! Still no running water - the cement has to dry properly first!”

Third step was connecting & installing the six hand washing taps in the long sink and open the main water supply. Running water, finally!


 "The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others" - Gandhi 

"Today Jakobu took these pails down to the Mtakuja school for the washrooms, some are used paint pails. I bought ten one litre for the smaller kids, that’s the size they wanted. The toilet taps are no good without a container to rinse down what you left, heh??? Riziki says that her "environment" teacher will show the kids what to do and how to 'flush' with the pails." 

"Truly great people in history never wanted to be great for themselves. All they wanted was the chance to do good for others and be close to God." - Muhammed Ali

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