The Our Lady of Mercy (OLOM) girls school in Chebukaka, Kenya has a reason to celebrate as their WaterStep Club, comprised of 35 students, launches a new safe water business. The school is fortunate, having had access to safe water and sanitation since last November when WaterStep Field Consultant, Humphrey Muchuma (pictured with the students below), trained club members on the M-100 ChlorineGenerator and BleachMaker. The principal at OLOM is thrilled with the impact safe water and improved sanitation has had on the students and told WaterStep that the reduction in absenteeism has been tremendous.
The first product launched by the club was OLOM Bleach. The students bottle the disinfection solution produced by the BleachMaker and label it with their custom labels. The bleach is sold in the community and the income generated goes to offset school fees for peers who are unable to pay them. They created an awesome commercial to promote their product. Check out the video below!
The bleach business has been incredibly successful, so they were ready to try their hand at safe water. All the students and faculty at the school have access to purified water, but the girls in the WaterStep Club wanted those in the community to reap the benefits of safe water also. They created a new label for their OLOM Water, obtained the necessary equipment and came up with a business plan. Water would be bottled twice each week and sold for a little less than $.04/bottle. It was time to launch their new business!
The launch of OLOM Water was a highly anticipated event and there were more than 1400 people in attendance, including many influential leaders from the community as well as local media. The launch was a huge success with the students selling all the water they had produced up until that day. Like the OLOM Bleach, the income generated from selling safe water will go to pay school fees for peers that are vulnerable. The WaterStep Club got requests for OLOM Water from local businesses, government officials and hospitals.
We are so proud of this incredible group of enterprising young women. They are making a tremendous impact on the health and well-being of their community. A huge thank you to the OLOM WaterStep Club for being amazing ambassadors and for saving lives with safe water in Chebukaka, Kenya!