Energy-saving stoves for the district Moshi

Since 2013 there’s been a partnership between state capital Kiel and the district Moshi Rural in Tanzania. The first project in this partnership is just about to be realized: the transformation and reinforcement of the use of energy-saving stoves in the district Moshi. RAFIKI e.V. has been entrusted with the implementation.

The people in the Kilimanjaro region still cook very traditionally: They cook outside over an open fire, during rainy season they shift the fireplace inside a house or under a roof.

Due to the smoke emission this is a great danger to health, especially when cooking inside of a building. On top of that, this leads to an enormous need of firewood. Because of the rapid growth in population the demand for firewood can’t be covered long since. As a result the trees on the farms which are actually needed as providers of shadow are cut down and the pressure on reserves is growing. This clearance has led to an enormous chance in the landscape in the last years: The slopes of the Kililamjaro are almost completely illuminated by sun by now. Apart from that there’s an irreparable damage of the soil due to the growth of corn. Erosions during the rainy season are the consequences. By now complete slopes have been torn down and there have been victims. As a consequence the government has forbidden cutting down trees, but the need is still there. The remaining trees are being “skeletonized” which means that all of the branches are cut down and the tree formally remains.

The situation is dramatic, the wood is so expensive by now that it is cheaper to produce chairs for example from metal than from wood. In many places there are massive reforestation programs and RAFIKI is part of it with the project “A tree for every student”. But the young trees need time to grow; they dry out or are eaten by goats.

In parallel to the urgent need to plant new trees the need of alternative, resource-efficient and healthy ways of cooking is big.

The implementation

It is our declared aim to inform the population of Mrimbo about the stoves. Different stoves are exhibited and their use is demonstrated at the school and students are familiarized with them during their lessons at KIUMAKO. Also the KIUMAKO kitchen will use an energy-saving stove.

During the last months we took the chance to attend local workshops again and again according to the current state of technology. Two of our members took part in a corresponding workshop at “Artefact” in Glücksburg and they came to know a high-quality energy-saving stove made from stainless steel which had been developed by engineers for the use in South Africa.

These stoves have important advantages: They need significantly less wood and they harm the users’ health a lot less because of an ingenious ventilation system. These energy-saving stoves will be put in to operation very soon in a in greater quantities.

The families in the Kilimanjaro area live in very simple conditions because they have hardly any chance to be economically successful with agricultural products. Both for the export commodity coffee and bananas as well as vegetables they get very few money so that it’s impossible to provide an adequate development (education, clothes or food) for their families. This means that the energy-saving stoves alone are not enough to change the daily life because the stoves cost 50€ each which is more than the complete monthly income of many families.

Because of that we will purchase 100 energy-saving stoves and distribute them. The town of Kiel will participate in the purchase costs. The distribution will be took in hand by the parish on one hand and on the other hand the project will be implemented by the KIUMAKO as an educational project. Students will come to know the technology, an exhibition will present the stoves and inform the population about the advantages of the stoves and at the same time meet the needs of the KIUMAKO. The model range will include stoves that reduce the need of wood or that can even process waste. The KIUMAKO will provide knowledge transfer not only for students but also for interested adults that can participate in workshops. Apart from that other municipalities can provide workshops for free.

The students of the KIUMAKO can pass on their knowledge to other students of the region. An important aim of the project is to take along young generations, to explain them these technologies and take the right steps today for a change in behaviour in the future.

We have discussed this approach very intensively with different representatives of the church and the government while we were in Tanzania.

The project is, as already mentioned, accompanied by a reforestation project called “A tree for every student”. For years we have planted a tree for every student at the KIUMAKO. In the context of this project this will be expanded so that on the one hand the reforestation can continue and on the other hand the relevance of the forests can be a topic of lessons at KIUMAKO in the context of education for sustainability.