Have you ever inhaled acrid smoke in front of a campfire and felt your eyes and nose sting? It must have been a very unpleasant experience. It is very familiar to Kenyan women who work in smoky kitchens, but the threat posed by wood firesmoke is severe.
World Health Organization(WHO) announced that 3.2 million people die prematurely each year from firewood smoke. That's more than six times the epidemic of malaria, which kills 500,000 people each year. 8,700 people prematurealy die every day from firewood smoke.Why on earth is this happening?
One-third of the world's population relies on firewood and biomass to cook.It emits toxic fumes that cause serious lung diseases such as asthma and respiratory infections, leading to premature death in people. However, there are areas with particularly high mortality rates.The rural area of Kenya is one of them.
The reason why there are more deaths in rural areas than in urban areas is low income. It makes rural people have no choice but to use firewood, a cheap energy source. According to the Kenyan government, 8 out of 10 households in rural areas use firewood.As a result, rural people are exposed to deadly fumes and die prematurely.It's especiallydeadly for Kenyan women who work an average of 3-6 hours a day in smoky kitchens.
As the low-income population is the majority of premature deaths from firewood smoke, providing them with safe cooking solutions is urgent.
Charles, a Kenyan young man, grew up watching his mother work in a smoky kitchen. He started the self-reliance project, Momwaki Energy Solution, intending to provide safe cooking solutions to low-income families in Kenya.
Mamwaki manufactures, sells, and repairs cookstoves. The Mamwaki cookstove is made of special materials to increase thermal efficiency and durability so that it can be used for 5 to 7 years. It makes people possible to cook with only a small amount of firewood, and saves people's lives by reducing smoke. Not only that but the efficient cookstove was able to protect forests by preventing indiscriminate logging.
Mamwaki sells cookstoves to rural low-income households through a small business network.Most of the small businesses are also run by low-income rural women who make a living by selling cookstoves. Mamwaki created 350 job opportunities andsupported women to provide for their families.
Mamwaki is working with small business owners to spread efficient cookstoves to all low-income households.With The Bridge Impact Donation, Mamwaki will upgrade cookstove production equipment and employ more workers in order to distribute cookstoves to low-income households.
Please support us with Impact Donation for the day when every family in Kenya cooks safely with the Mamwaki cookstove!