No longer is there the daily journey to the river; our lives have been forever changed. The number of persons with water-borne illnesses has decreased dramatically. Students now have a higher rate of school attendance. Everything has changed." - Father Dominic Munini
In June, 2009, St. Benedict's Parish began a mission project with Kalama, Kenya. Kalama is the hometown of Father Dominic Munini who had been in residence at St. Mary’s in Canandaigua, NY for five years as he completed a Bachelor’s degree in Biology from St. John Fisher College and a Masters at SUNY Brockport. During his time with the parish Father Dominic outlined three critical needs in his village:
- Potable Water
- Access to Education for High School and College Aged Youth
- Access to Health Care
Between September until the beginning of December, 2009, St. Benedict's parish raised over $70,000 to fund:
- The Drilling of a Borehole Well at 160 Meters
- The Funding of Two Students to Attend High School & Two to Attend College
- The Construction of a Medical Clinic
The money raised has made such a dramatic difference in the lives of over 1,200 residents of Kalama. For the first time, the women and children no longer need to walk two miles each way to the river to hand-carry polluted water into their village which was not safe to drink or cook with.
Not only did we strike water, but had the second most successful borehole project in Kenya. The volume of water exceeded expectations so dramatically that a forty foot tower was erected so that water could be stored in a tank atop the tower then fed by gravity to remote portions of the area. We provided the funds for the additional pipeline; the villagers dug the trenches and laid the pipe by hand.
"Water is life," Father Dominic Munini