While Kenya is not typically thought of as being the most destitute of the sub Saharan African nations, the reality for the majority of Kenyans is bleak. 46 percent of Kenya’s 44 million people live on less than one dollar per day. Current statistics also indicate that just 59 percent of the country has access to clean safe water and a paltry 39 percent have satisfactory sanitation in place. There are still an estimated 10,000 children that die each year from diarrhoea caused by unsafe water and poor sanitation.
The United Nations classifies Kenya as a chronically water scarce nation and it ranks 21st for the worst access to clean water in the world.
The area tends to be prone to drought as about 80 percent of the land of Kenya is classified as arid or semi-arid. This produces food scarcity and poverty. One of the worst droughts ever recorded in Kenya occurred in 2006. It was eventually declared a national disaster as it led to massive starvation and widespread food shortages. Add to these problems of water scarcity the poor sanitation issues – as many as 10% of all deaths in Kenya are related to water-borne or sanitation-related diseases – and the need for good sustainable water and sanitation work in Kenya becomes evident.
Just a Drop has been working with field partners in Kenya for many years to help alleviate some of this suffering. Read more about our work in the project stories that follow here.
*Photo credit: Mark Jenning Bates