What We Do

Water is a scarce, necessary resource.

Water Transport

Here is one of the 1.1 million people who “water walk.” The water is always polluted.

One billion people lack access to clean water.

Children miss an education because they “water walk.” The nearest water source may be miles away and after retrieving water, kids return to the water hole multiple times per day. Surface water is always polluted, and it is the only water available.

When people have clean drinking water, a world of possibilities opens up:

  • Children do not have to “water walk” so they can be home schooled or join a community school.
  • Water promotes hygiene with baths, restroom hand washing, clean hands for washing and cooking vegetables.
  • A family with water can grow a garden, feed them self and sell excess to the city.
Family Water Collection

Large swaths of Africa often suffer from drought. The country has rainy and dry seasons. Frequently, rain does not fall for six months. A rain water collection system is wonderful.

Along with local wildlife and plants, small springs often serve more than 100 villagers and livestock.

Provided you can get your hands on the materials, an advanced rain water system with storage is great.  With the barrels pictured to the left full, an average American, who typically uses about 80-100 gallons of water per day, would last 6 to 8 days if they did not mind the oil and rust that come along with this system.

Advanced Water Collectin System

When it does rain, this homemade water collection system helps store family water.

Drilling for water provides a longer term African solution.

Drilling for water

In Kenya, drilling for water provides a long-term solution.

Well drilling is hard work. The work is worth it to bring water right to the village, allowing women and children to spend less time “water walking” and more time with school and work. Schooling ultimately strengthens the family and community.

After drilling the well is capped.  Capping a well keeps it from becoming a mud hole and also keeps competing villages from dropping a dead animal into the water source.


The well is capped, keeping it from becoming a mud hole.

When the well is complete, it is time to celebrate!  Everybody gets drinking water.  It is time to roast the goat and party!  All paid for with donated shoes. Use the easy online form to request a shoe drive kit and get started today!

School Water Well

Shoeman Water Projects drilled and installed this water well at a primary school in Kenya.

Our Mission Trips

We have participated in mission trips to the following locations in Kenya – Kakamega, Kericho, Geterkam, Lwala, Eburgon, Limuru, Bungoina, Nigro, Kapenguria, Tinderet and Aibasha.

In August 2009, Shoeman Water Projects initiated its water missions in Africa with a “Water for Kenya” team.  In Kakamega a school received a fresh water well.  It had been 10 years since the students had seen drinking water.

By July 2010, the Water for Kenya Team, using drilling rigs donated by Shoeman Water Projects, drilled about 200 wells near Kakamega. The local labor force was trained  and hired.

By July 2010, Shoeman Water Projects imported a new drilling rig to Kenya and started Shoeman Kenya Limited to directly control drilling operations.

In January 2011, the Shoeman Water Projects drilled three wells for elementary and secondary schools.  The Community Health Center in Lawala, Kenya received drinking water for the first time.

The Health Center was founded by two brothers, Drs. Milton and Frederick Ochieng from Lwala, Kenya. The brothers were sent to America by the village to become doctors.  They became doctors and returned to build the Lawla Medical Center.

Dr. Milton Ochieng is a resident physician of Internal Medicine at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, MO, and his brother Dr. Frederick Ochieng is a resident physician at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, TN.

Their clinic in Lawala, serves over 15,000 patients a year.  And now they have drinking water.

“The entire village was buzzing about this exciting development when the Shoeman Team arrived,” noted Dr. Milton Ochieng.

Water purification systems were also installed at surface water springs in Lawala, which are often highly contaminated.

In January 2012, Shoeman Water Projects returned to Kenya with a mission team that spent one month drilling wells, installing water purification systems, doing pump repairs, and teaching water and hygiene education at schools.

In July 2010, a seven-person Shoeman Water Projects Team worked in Port-au-Prince, Haiti installing dual 500-gallon tank purification systems, 4 spigot manifolds, and piping to existing wells. Groups served include the House of Hope Orphanage, the new Christian Church in Tabarre, the Voix de Bonnet Medical Clinic and the Mississippi Orphanage.

Also in July 2010, a three-member team aboard the USS Iwo Jima, along with other health volunteers on the North Coast, taught basic sanitation to local communities supporting the Third Fleet’s ongoing earthquake relief.

In July 2011, a 14-member Shoeman Water Projects mission team volunteered in Haiti and installed five water purification systems and repaired hand pumps in Port-au-Prince, Gonaïves, and surrounding villages. A 500-gallon tank and purification system was installed at The Kids Vision Orphanage School, built in March 2011, in the Sarthe 55 district of Port-au-Prince.

Haith Water Purification 2010

After the 2009 earthquake in Haiti, water purification systems were critical.

Before the Haiti earthquake, 45% of Haiti’s people did not have access to safe water.  And 83% did not have access to sufficient sanitation. Furthermore, in 2009 contaminated ground water was the leading cause of infant mortality, and deadly hepatitis, cholera and dysentery took many adult lives.

After the earthquake, clean water is still hard to find, even for hospitals.

Information provided by World Health Organization.