I made a journey to go kiss my mother and on my way home I met my kid sister carrying wood. When she saw me she started crying. She was tired of missing school at least twice a week to go gather wood for my family. Kids carry wood in Uganda because that’s what their families used to cook. Education has changed my life, so seeing my sister on the verge of losing the only opportunity she had to improve her life hit me hard.
She inspired me to think about an alternative source of fuel. I quit my job. My boss thought that I was crazy. My mum thought I was under a spell. I came back to Kampala and then went to a university professor. He made me stand in front of his class and said: “this young man is crazy enough to think that he can fix the energy crisis in this country”, but he doesn’t know how to do it. Who wants to help him? And everyone’s hand went up.
I had $500 and we run through it in two months. I decided to sell my TV, my bed and my sofa seat. After I sold my stuff, my girlfriend slammed the door and said: “if you want to waste your life, waste yours alone”. Now I’m the CEO of Eco Fuel Africa. It’s amazing what can happen if you believe in your dreams and act upon them.
We figured out how to turn farm waste like sugar cane waste, coffee husks, corn waste into clean cooking fuel that burns cleaner, burns longer and is 65% per cent cheaper.
We put our product on the market, and people loved it. That’s when the journey began. We work with a network of twenty five hundred 2500 farmers. We have four hundred and sixty women 460 retailers, who sell this fuel back to the communities.
Currently we reach ten thousand 10.000 households. But we want to reach sixteen point six 16.6 million households in the next 10 years.
By bringing clean cooking fuel to users, we are stopping deforestation, stopping indoor air pollution, and enabling farmers and women to earn a living.
More kids are in school getting the education they need. And me, I fell in love again with a wonderful woman. Now she’s my wife, and together we have a beautiful baby girl. I only look at myself as an everyday community guy, trying to make his community a little bit better.
ESI AFRICA/AFRICA’S POWER JOURNAL is the author of this images.
Contenido Web de Yolanda Muriel está sujeto bajo Licencia Creative Commons Atribución-NoComercial-SinDerivadas 3.0 Unported.