Lejofonds is a nonprofit organization based in the Netherlands founded to help the citizens of poor rural areas in Uganda. Since 2009 they have operated their successful 'Goat to Goat' program, where families with a disabled child in need of special care, can receive a pregnant goat to help provide milk and meat. Recipients will build shelters for their animals and are trained in their care.
In 2012, Lejofonds decided to start a solar cooking program as well. They began with members of their previous project in Seetah Nazigo, located in the Mukono district of Uganda. Forty families were trained in how to use their new cookers, whose distribution was subsidized by the foundation. Based on the success of this program they plan to create a similar solar cooking program for the residents of neighboring Nkonkonjeru.
Recent news and developments
- March 2013:
Solar cooking changes your life
The Lejofonds started in 2012 for 45 families in Seeta Nazigo in the Mukono district in Uganda a project Integrated Sustainable Solar Cooking.
With financial support from the Lejofonds the members of the project could buy two Cookits, two wood saving stoves and a hay basket. The materials were obtained from Solar Connect Association in Kampala.
People had to sign an agreement before they got the materials.
The members of the project are divide in groups. Each group has a group head. When there are problems a member has to take contact with the group head to find a solution. The project has a coordinator who is responsible for ensuring that the project runs smoothly. He explains through monthly reports accountable to the Lejofonds
Representatives and the coordinator Lejofonds have evaluated the project in February 2013.
The members always use the cookits whenever there is enough sun shine.
For the families who has large numbers they do not prepare enough food for the families instead it is only possible to prepare vegetables like ground nuts, sim sim, cabbages, and also greens.
Small families that is between 3-5people they use the cookits to prepare the food for the family.In this case they prepare food like posho, bananas, potatoes, and also other kind of soft foods
A very big difference is observed while eating the food prepared in the cookits. The food prepared in the cookits has a good smell; the taste is different, compared to others in the kitchen.
They always put back the cookits in the cotton bag whenever they finish the cooking. However it was discovered that they do not all wash them. So the coordinator advised them to wash the materials whenever they are dirty.
It was discovered that some members forgot how to fold the cookit after they have finished cooking food. The way they fold the cookit is different from how they taught them.
Sometimes the members change the saucepans. Instead of using them in the cookits they put them on the fire which makes the paint to be rubbed off.
Some members do not know how to set the stones in the cookits which leeds to destroy of the polythen since the heat from the pan goes directly to the polythen bag.
The sauce pans are very small especially to families who have large families so the sauce pans can not cook food for large families.
They should be taught how to cook food in big saucepans using the cookits. In this case more advise was needed how to prepare enough food in the cookits for large families.
The members use always the stoves whenever there is no enough sun to use the cookits and when it is rainy season.
The stoves help members so much since it reduced the risks of going to the bush to look for the fire wood.
However the problem with the stoves is that some of them the top cover always gets spoilt quickly. So they always get damaged when you put heavy sauce pans with too much food.
The hay baskets are used after they have used the stove and also when they used the fire wood the food is put in these hay baskets.
The Wapis (water pasteurization Indicator) were given out later and not all the members knows how to use it. Members requested for instruction
A workshop was organized which all identified questions and problems have been discussed
Information from the members shows that the materials changed their lives in terms of efficiency in time left to do other house hold work and has taught them new technology in cooking the food.
Finally the point of view from the chairman of the member committee:
it is not always possible to get some one who can contribute towards the transformation of your life and he said the members in the project are very lucky to see that they have Lejofonds which is largely working hard to see that the members in the project who are in SN can become role models to others in the community using the different materials which are given to members by the Lejofonds.
Participants about the project solar cooking
Wood saving stove
Sylvia explained to members that the stove is very nice via charcoal saving, you can put food on the stove and then also do other things. The stove can also cook other types including hard food like cassava, potatoes etc. also soft food like rice and others so, she said the stove is so good even does not cause smoke which can affect human health.
Rachael explained to the members how effective the hay baskets are. She said the baskets are so since she added that you can put food and go with it in the garden since they take long in their gardens. So it can keep the food warm for about a period. Not only food but also it is good for keeping water warm especially those with the school children. They can keep in water the whole night and in the morning the children can use warm water as tea in.The children can take tea when they are going to school,
Zeridha said she had visitors at home and she wanted to use the cookits to prepare for them eggs. But she was in fear because she has never used the cookits to cook the eggs. So she explained to her visitors that I am going to prepare you the eggs using this cookits we got from our project. The visitors could not believe that the sun can cook the eggs. Still Zeridha was in fear that eggs may be half cooked. Zeridha used the experience from Olivia where you cook the eggs without putting water. Indeed the exercise was of great success and the eggs were cooked and was ready to be eaten by the visitors.
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