Posts tagged ‘energy’

Selling stoves in Burkina Faso, a humble field guide

Diana Biggs | KF 18 | Burkina Faso

Last week I was lucky enough to join my Entrepreneurs du Monde (EdM) colleagues on a field mission in the Ioba province of Burkina Faso, a rural area that borders Ghana. There, in the town of Dano, is a small EdM office manned by Benoit Some, who covers EdM’s Burkina Faso social enterprise arm, Nafa Naana, in the area.

The small, roadside office doubles as a storage hub and retail outlet for energy-efficient and gas cookstoves (as described in my last blog post).

EdM's Dano office

Cookstove display outside the EdM branch in Dano.

Here, this March, four rural shopkeepers were given training in the Nafa Naana model — the product offering, environmental protection, stock management, cash management and sales techniques. Then in April, EdM set them up for the sale of the cookstoves, providing them with simple management tools, such as receipts and sales lists, posters and an informational leaflet to show interested customers. The organization also installed grills produced by local iron workers to lock up the cookstoves and organized four promotional events in the area to drum up interest. Then of course there were the actual cookstoves, which are supplied to the shopkeepers with interest-free advances.

(more…)

7 August 2012 at 08:00 4 comments

Time, Love, Money & Energy

By Kaajal Laungani, KF12 Philippines

During our discussion, Mike mentioned something that I had thought a lot about prior to applying to the Kiva Fellows Program – the concept of being satisfied and feeling grateful. When he would ask his audiences if they had enough time, money, love or energy, most would flatly respond with a NO. I had observed similar sentiments through my interactions with people back home in California.

When I returned to Bohol, I thought it would be interesting to see how Kiva clients responded to the same questions. Before you read on, think about how you would respond to the following questions: Do you have enough time? love? money? energy?

Continue Reading 19 April 2011 at 03:00 4 comments

How’s the weather?

By Charlie Wood, Kiva Fellow in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan with Mol Bulak Finance (MCC)

Preparing to move to Kyrgyzstan for an undetermined amount of time caused some anxiety to my house. Not the least of our concerns was what mother nature might dish out during the winter in a place so close to Siberia. The day before I left the U.S., wracked with an LSAT induced cold, my mom made sure I was ferried to the local REI to stock up on long underwear. Yet like with many things in life, the reality has been a bit underwhelming so far. I haven’t even needed to wear the ushanka I bought on my second day here. That’s not to say that the weather hasn’t been unique.

Continue Reading 12 November 2010 at 14:00 6 comments

Why Lend to a Charcoal Seller?

That’s a question I’d never considered before serving as a Kiva Fellow. I figured that charcoal is a dirty and unsustainable source of fuel, and not one that I want to support. Charcoal production causes massive deforestation and produces considerable emissions of carbon dioxide. So when presented with the option of lending to a charcoal seller on Kiva’s website, I always selected an entrepreneur in a different sector to support.

Flash forward a few months – I have now enjoyed hundreds of meals cooked on charcoal stoves and grills, first in Rwanda and now in Tanzania. I’ve also met about a dozen Kiva clients who make their living producing and selling charcoal. These experiences haven’t made me a full advocate for continued use of charcoal fuel. They have, however, made me realize that the issues surrounding sustainable energy are not white and black, but closer to charcoal grey. So here’s why I would now consider lending to a charcoal seller and supporting them through Kiva…

Continue Reading 23 June 2010 at 01:44 11 comments


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