Friday, June 18, 2010
Wednesday, June 16, 2010
Monday, June 14, 2010
For WFP’s School Meals Programme (formerly School Feeding Programme) stoves are a big issue because they are needed to cook food with firewood. WFP provides food to the schools but there is no provision for firewood so the parents have to cover this cost of firewood themselves. The cost of firewood as gone up, especially since the government has acted on illegal logging. Nairobi schools spend up to $500 per month on firewood, which is an indirect and very high cost of sending children to school. Schools cook on the traditional three-stone open fire stove, which basically is three big stones and a large cooking pot on top and of course a fire underneath. There are 20,000 schools in Kenya and most of them use this method for cooking, which doesn’t really help Kenya’s problem with deforestation either.
Fortunately high quality institutional stoves are available in Kenya. They save between 40-70% of firewood, have a chimney that directs all smoke out of the kitchen and they are highly popular among schools but are also very expensive; between approximately 1,500 to 3,300 USD depending on the size. I visited a Nairobi school last week, which could report a 400% savings in firewood since they received the new 600L stove through the WFP stove programme. The 600 liter jiko can cook for the school’s 2,000 children. The school signed up for our programme and received the stove at no up front cost. Next month they will make their first of six payments, which will account for 50% of the cost of the stove. The school knows that the money it repays will not go back to WFP but will finance a stove for another school, that will then have to pay 50% and so on.
We designed this project** and the schools in Nairobi have really embraced it. It has actually been a big part of my job for the last year. On top of other things I am responsible for at work, this is the cream of the crop. In March 2010 we received USD 1 million for this project. We are now taking the project to the rural schools and it will be interesting to see if the rural schools are willing to share 50% of the cost. I am going to Masai land this coming week to meet with 80 head teachers and try to get their “buy in” for the programme. Wish me good luck.
**Publisher's Note: "We designed this project" should really be "I mostly designed this project" because it is Kristoffer's "baby". It is a project that has incredibly positive environmental impacts for Kenya and is the first of its kind being done within WFP (worldwide). Kristoffer may not like to brag himself because he is Danish, but I am happy to brag about him because I am American! ~LMW
Also a Note from Grace: Tillykke med fodselsdagen til Farmor! Jeg elsker dig!
Saturday, June 12, 2010
- You are a big girl now, Grace. Soon you have to drink other milk because Mama almost doesn't have any more milk.
- Mama's milk is almost gone now, Grace. In two more days you can't have any more of Mama's milk.
- Grace, after tomorrow Mama won't have any more milk.
- Tomorrow morning is your last time to have Mama's milk because you are a big girl now.
Wednesday, June 9, 2010
...my parents enjoyed all seven of their grandchildren...