It’s amazing to think that what began with a simple tour through Kibera over a year ago has turned into an organization with two Kenyan managers, twelve water vendors, and an innovative model to improve access to clean drinking water in the poorest communities. Life Force Kiosks is currently scheduled to start operations on Wednesday, May 25, 2011.
Preparations for our launch event are nearly complete. We’ve invited guest speakers from the Ministry of Public Health and Sanitation, KEMRI, the local government, and the water vendor network. Numerous other non-profit organizations, community groups, and leaders from schools and religious organizations have also been invited to attend. We’ve hired a band and an Emcee to draw a crowd and entertain at the event, which will be held in a large outdoor area in the heart of Kibera. We have a 100 person tent as well in case of rain and based on the way people cram into busses here, it can probably fit 300 people. 2,000 leaflets touting our services and benefits have been printed, and they include a 4 month calendar so people will hang them in their houses (people LOVE displaying calendars here in Kenya). We’ll also be serving free Life Force Kiosks treated water from branded water tanks so people in the community can see for themselves that our water has a nice, natural taste.
Detailed vendor training is being conducted today. The session includes technical training on how to purify the water and clean the storage containers as well as business training. At the end of the training session, our managers will pretend to be potential customers and each vendor will have the opportunity to pitch them our services, overcome common objections that they’ll raise, and then clean a container and purify the water.
I look forward to posting several pictures of the launch event next week, as well as pictures and updates on our live operations. Stay tuned. Things are getting exciting!