SMOKELESS STOVES AND SOLARLIGHTS: ANOTHER STEP TOWARDS NEW AGE
The families of Mugu live with an open fire place in their living rooms. It serves as a source of heat and light as well as for cooking. A family needs per day up to 60 kg of firewood. Due to the cold, the huts do not have any windows, so the families sit in the smoke of the open fire for hours. These living conditions cause up to 70 different diseases – among others those of the respiratory tract, the eyes and the stomach. The natural environment is also severely destroyed by the radical deforestation, which ultimately cause fatal landslides.
The people never had any kind of heating possibilities. Therefore, we developed and constructed smokeless-stoves that were specifically tailored to fit the circumstances of Mugu. These need up to 50% less firewood and they store the heat through an embedded layer of loam. Since the smoke from the new stoves is directed through a pipe, the families do not longer sit in the life-threatening smoke, which greatly improves their state of health. In addition to the installation of the smokeless-stoves, we train the villagers in the use and maintenance. Our vision: Every family in Mugu should receive a smokeless-stove.
A ray of hope in the dark hours: arriving at the new age with solar lights
The solar panels chosen by us have been developed to supply the three attached LED lights with power from the batteries for up to five days and that even on completely cloudy days during monsoon. During the training the villagers learned the maintenance of their solar system and they made a financial contribution as well, which was directed into the capital stock of their respective savings group.
For the villagers of Mugu, electric light means a leap from middle ages into present time. Their everyday lives are being greatly facilitated and the natural environment is also protected by the significantly reduced consumption of wood. As a result, the women have to collect less wood and drag it laboriously to their huts. The saved time can now be used by the adults for field-work or handicrafts in the evenings and by the children for some playtime or homework. From the very beginning, our goal was to ensure that each and every family has its own solar system.