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Bethel Business and Community Development Centre

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Last updated: 20 February 2016      
Baked bread Ivan Yaholnitsky 2008

Solar-baked bread

Parabolic Trough Solar Cooker

A parabolic trough bread oven powers a solar bakery run by the Bethel Business and Community Development Centre in Lesotho.

The mission of Bethel Business and Community Development Centre (BBCDC) is to teach young men and women general engineering skills, manual capabilities, applied sciences and leadership abilities that address the needs of rural and urban development in Lesotho, and to pursue financial self-sustainability through self-reliance, commercial endeavor, and responsible environmental management.

BBCDC addresses several thorny and interdependent development problems, including: educational innovation, landscape regeneration and water resources improvement, financial independence, adoption of renewable energy platforms, appropriate technology, and design of the built environment for sustainability.  The school's primary mission is to provide skills and knowledge to young men and women for well-being and self-reliance through experiential learning.  BBCDC stresses the design, assembly, operation and management of complex systems as a vital driver of wealth, value and order creation. While the surrounding landscape reflects moderate to severe land degradation along with high levels of underemployment, BBCDC has proven that science and technology for hydraulic control and application, together with solar energy utilization can sustain strong economic growth and opportunity when coupled with business acumen. Light industry, tourism, and food processing provide additional opportunities. Careful design and establishment of the built environment breaks vicious circles and replaces them with virtuous ones.


  • February 2016: The Bethel Business and Community Development Centre published their Annual Report for 2015
  • April 2008: The Bethel Business and Community Development Centre has built a prototype parabolic trough system that he is using to operate a steady cottage bread and pastry baking business. The device can bake 25-40, 1000g loaves (depending on the season) in a day (and even a bit more on a perfect day). It also does pastries beautifully. The solar bread baker works so well, that he has invested in a 20 liter dough mixer, which also operates off his house’s PV system.

Audio and video

  • April 2014
Bethel Business and Community Development Centre04:03

Bethel Business and Community Development Centre

See also


Ivan Yaholnitsky, Managing Director
Bethel Business and Community Development Centre
PO Box 53
Mt. Moorosi 750

Home tel: +266 27008463
Lesotho mobile: +266 5874-2991
South Africa mobile: (+27) 72-071-1096


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