In Dar es Salaam, we installed a chlorine generator at an Assembly of God church in the city. A ministry started in Birmingham, Alabama is working out of this church to minister to the villages outside of the city. Like Sweetwater, they are a young organization, not associated specifically with any one particular denomination. Working out of Dar, their goals are to address the physical and then the spiritual needs in the Tanzanian villages. Through a doctor in Birmingham, we made contact with Joel and Hilda Rugano, a local Tanzanian couple who lived in Birmingham for almost fifteen years and have now returned to Dar to start the Vision of Ministries Foundation. Their goal is to use this initial chlorine generator as a demonstration area, and then to send people out into the villages to install more. We spent our last week in Dar working on the chlorine generator for this ministry. In addition to the physical installation, we spent extra time allowing the group to learn how it works and to actually do the installation themselves. We enjoyed our time spent with this group; they are energetic about their work and very much welcomed us into their family.  

^^^ The plumber crawling out of the water tank. 

^^^ Installing the water tanks onto the concrete pad. They built the pad completely by hand, mixing the concrete by hand, and had the entire thing completed over night. 

^^^ Daddy going through the generator manual and taking inventory of the supplies.

 ^^^ The Chlorine Generator, built by the Water Step Organization.

 ^^^ Final installation

 ^^^ Testing the chlorine 

^^^ Phoebe and I also spent some time giving demonstrations on how to dilute bleach into a mother solution of chlorine to use to kill bacteria in water. A chlorine mother solution continues to be the easiest, surest, cheapest way for people to clean their water. 

 ^^^ The chlorine generator was successfully installed and everyone tried the clean african water!

In Dar es Salaam, we have had a few slow days, while we waited for a local church to do the prep work for a chlorine generator, that we hope to put in at the end of the week. To fill the time, we took a day and went to a local market place. It was like the original World Market only cheaper and more authentic. In Africa, outside of an actual mall, they haggle over everything. EVERYTHING. This market was no exception and because we are mzungus the prices started extra high. What they didn't know, however, is that we knew all of this and were prepared. I'm afraid we left quite a few African salesman a little disappointed. Although, it can be somewhat of an overwhelming experience, since they yell at you constantly throwing out prices before you even walk into the booth. I began looking through stacks of canvases in one shop and after that everywhere I walked by they would pull me into their shops showing me every painting they had and desperately trying to figure out what I was looking for. While I haggled over paintings, Phoebe led a determined expedition to find turkish pants. Kenny, our driver, seemed very impressed with our bargaining skills. 

^^^ Phoebe shopping for the just the right pair of pants.

Phoebe and I stopped to look at earrings in one booth and the men working, or hanging around, started asking us questions. 

"Where are you from?"



"What part?"
"What's your name?"
"Are you Married?"

"no." I answered.

"Why not?"
"I dont understand"
"Not yet?" They all laughed, looking confused (or at least pretending to be)

Behind me Phoebe replied with a smirk, "If you ever meet an American man, then you will understand."

They roared and we left.  

^^^ Kenny, our faithful and attentive driver/handler. 

I spent at least twenty minutes haggling with some poor man over these three painting. I laughed and shook my head with the first price he threw out and he looked like he was going to have a stroke at mine. Eventually I landed on a price I liked but he wouldn't go lower, so I started to leave telling him I would have to think about it. He called me back in a panic wanted to know how much I would pay right then and not leave. He shook his head no at the price I suggested and set a price in the middle, I walked out to "ask daddy" and returned with the amount I wanted to pay, after a few more min he shook his head and rolled my paintings for me in newspaper. 


^^^ I finished The Old man and the Sea on the plane over to Tanzania, finding this piece felt a little bit like fate.

^^^ wooden and bone earrings

^^^ Phoebe's spoils: Turkish pants.

On our way out of the market we passed a shop with a great, slightly worn brown and blue leather bag hanging inside. Phoebe asked the woman sitting near by how much for the bag. They haggled for a minute and Phoebe walked away, without it. Quickly the woman called her back and agreed to Phoebe's price. She then opened the purse and started pulling all of her personal items out! Phoebe literally bought the bag off the woman's shoulder.

Hello all! Sorry for the delay. We arrived in Tanzania safe and sound. Only took four hours in the car, two unimaginable, unmentionable bathroom stops, an hour flight, a layover, a delay, another hour flight, and the Tanzanian customs to go 750 miles. But it was all worth it just to go to the bathroom in the Chinese built, Kisumu airport. 

Dar es Salaam has been quite the culture shock from little, rural Kisii.  If Kenya exists in shades of rust then Tanzania is painted in ash. Dar is a much more urban space than Kisii, and much more packed together. Over four million people are living in a metropolitan area, which is roughly the size of Birmingham, Alabama. (Birmingham is home to less than a million.) Most of the buildings and homes are concrete and off the main paved roads everything becomes sand. The traffic in Dar es Salaam is indescribable. Phoebe said, “I’d always hoped that if I was to die in Africa it would be of some rare, tropical disease, I’m disappointed to find that I am going to die in a car accident. I could have done that in America”. The chaos of the Tanzanian road is almost comical, we sit in traffic jams more often than we move, and all drivers do exactly what they want following no traffic laws, traffic suggestions, or even the most basic rules or order.  Motorcycles and three wheeled taxis don’t exist to the other vehicles, even though they almost outnumber them and the motorcycle drivers see their fellow traffic as an elaborate obstacle course with no rules. BUT! Don’t worry because wearing your seatbelt (only if you are in the front, of course) is much more important than perhaps trying to prevent three lanes of traffic going both ways on a two lane road, facing off in a stand still.  

Even though Dar is a relatively thriving city, the water crisis is still dire.  In the city, water can be hard to find outside of the rainy season and because it is located on the coast of the Indian Ocean a lot of the water has a high salt content.  Many of the residents have to pay to have {DIRTY} water delivered to their homes.  Dar es Salaam is an eerie contradiction of development and impoverishment. Our hotel room has a doorbell, air conditioning, wifi (most of the time), and running water, but every morning, from our window we watch people with handcarts fill dirty buckets, with dirty water, out of a dirty hose.  There are jewelry stores filled with diamonds and gold and people who are still only making $2.50 a day.  There are cars, and cell phones, and high-rise buildings, but barely enough sanitation to support it and no clean water.

Our contact in Dar has been primarily the members of Grace Primitive Baptist Church. This past week we visited in the homes of some of the members, bringing them filters to clean their water.  Everyone welcomed us with warm hospitality. Mama Victor made us a wonderful meal of rice and cabbage; she is a schoolteacher who supports her family. We drove 45 min, crossing a dry river, to visit Josephine; she rides two hours on a bus to her job everyday. She lives on the outskirts of the city in an unfinished house (which is very common) with a sand floor, two of the bedrooms in the back make up her living quarters, another open room has become a temporary chicken house, and in another she hangs her wet laundry.  She hopes to one day finish her house and have her son come and live with her. Another family of four that we brought a filter to warmly opened their home to us. They live in a single 12x12 room that contains a bed, a couch, and cabinet. Everyone was very kind, and very open to our discussions about water. However, education remains our most significant battle.

We visited another local church and met with the associate pastor, instructing him on how to clean their water using bleach.  Using bleach to make a chlorine mother solution in order to disinfect water is the easiest, cheapest way to provide clean drinking water. We hope that the church leaders will instruct their congregations in this method and the dangers of bad water.

Sunday we attended Grace PBC, where the singing was beautiful. After services Daddy gave a demonstration on mixing a chlorine mother solution, to the congregation. They asked very good questions and again we are hopeful that the information will continue to spread.

Last year, Sweetwater installed two chlorine generator systems, one at our driver Kenny’s home and another at the home of Obey’s children. Both systems required some maintenance and repair from routine use. We were able to fix both systems and they are now running again.

^^^Phoebe reading up on the installation directions

^^^ Neighboring little girl who was way to cool for us.

^^^ Totally safe.

^^^ "It's all about the bubbles"

"but a man is not made for defeat, a man can be destroyed but not defeated." 
-Ernest Hemingway
The Old Man and the Sea

^The Indian Ocean…Incredible.

We received this incredible letter from Charles' son Filden. It has been immensely encouraging and we wanted to pass it along to everyone at home who has played a part in Sweetwater's work.


Thank you for the good work done. 

We have eyes but we do not observe keenly. We have ears but we do not listen attentively. We have horses but we do not ride. Likewise we have opportunity but we do sit back and watch it slip away. However, the act of someone traveling from as far as U.S.A. to Africa to do one noble task - enlightening people on the importance of drinking clean water, free from bacteria and how to treat it - is indeed a show of concern and passion in our brothers and sisters and it has hit me to me to thank them because it is not my nature to takings for granted.

I sincerely thank you, Sweetwater, also the rest who in one way or the other were involved in your visit to our beloved country Kenya. It has been a good experience to have you around, the good conversations we have had about academic life in the U.S.A and most important, the good task you are carrying out. You have visited several places and taught us how to treat water using chlorine in addition to other methods for instance using water guard or boiling. I was interested to know the importance of the task and you provided an explanation which I think is sufficient to convince any other person alongside the scientific tests we carried out and the chemicals you gave me to go and test whether the water we do take at school is clean or not.

Sometimes we do suffer from diseases for instance cholera, dysentery, and typhoid which cause severe diarrhea that leads to dehydration. Surprisingly, We attribute the cause of such conditions to something else and not water as it is supposed to be. Well, we may have chlorine and would have liked to treat our water to be fit for human consumption. However, how can we use chlorine when we have neither read nor been taught how to use it. This proves that the work you have come to accomplish is highly regarded and it is my wish that people will continue in the practice and God will help you reach as many people as possible.

This is what I have learned. The chemical called Chlorine is bleach and can be used to treat water. It is about 4% concentrated. We need to reduce this concentration to 1%. Therefore, we add water to the chlorine to make the following ratio, 3 water: 1 chlorine. By doing so, we reduce the chlorine from 4% concentration to 1%. We then call this solution “mother solution”. This is now used to treat water by adding specific amounts of the solution to specific amounts of water.  20ml of mother solution can treat 800 liters of water. Shake well and wait for at least 30 minutes. Wonderful! As simple as like that and there you are enjoying your clean water!

It is my prayer that you may continue with the same spirit and I am convinced that the project will succeed. Of course it will expand and posters will be printed sensitizing people about dangers posed by using dirty water and steps to be observed when treating water. Sorry for the challenges you have undergone here and there. As you will leave for Tanzania then to U.S.A, I wish you safe and blessed journey and God’s protection until he avails a chance to for us to meet again. When you get home, say “hi” to our brothers and sisters and tell them we salute them.

Filden Kenyanjui 

       One of the water projects Sweetwater scheduled for this trip was to have a well dug and install two filtrations systems. Hand dug wells are very common in Kisii, however since they only run about 50ish feet deep, the water is still contaminated with bacteria. For our purposes a well allows closer access to water so that they are able to filter several hundred liters a day in the filtration system.
      This week we finished the system that was started last year to go into Martin's church in Nyachenga and a well was dug in Kiorina at Charles's church where we built the second filtration system. Ideally these congregations will be able to filter clean water for their families and begin ministering to their communities.

^Nyachenge, filtration system Installation

^This is the guy, who dug the well. He climbed 50ft into the well using only that rope and some indentions he put into the walls of the well. It is unbelievable.

^Kiorina Installation.