Access to safe water is estimated at 60% in urban areas and 40% in rural areas, while sewerage systems cover only 14% of the population. There is still a need in both rural and urban areas for improved access to water and better sanitation. While Kenya is classified as a water scarce country, water shortages have been exacerbated over the past few years due to drought, as well as urban migration placing increasing pressure on water sources.
Poor sanitation and lack of access to clean drinking water is a major contributor to the prevalence of water borne diseases such as diarrhea and cholera in communities. Water-, sanitation- and hygiene-related illnesses are currently the number one cause of hospitalization in children under age five in Kenya, with diarrhea the third biggest cause of death in children according to the Ministry of Health and Sanitation.
Improved access to water and better sanitation will have a significant impact on health in communities. Women and girls who currently spend significant proportion of their time nursing sick relatives and friends will benefit from having more time to spend on other activities, as well as fewer treatment costs.The KCIC’s mission is to ensure availability of clean and safe drinking water by supporting entrepreneurs who are developing innovative solutions in this area.