Trees Water & People

Trees, Water & People is committed to improving people's lives by helping communities to protect, conserve and manage the natural resources upon which their long-term well-being depends. We believe that natural resources are best protected when local people play an active role in their care and management.
Dec 10, 2012

Another season begins...

Another season is beginning at Trees, Water & People’s three Nicaraguan tree nurseries.  The end of the year is when the nurseries are cleaned and prepared for the next season’s plantings.  We’ve bought most of our seed, most of our soil substrate, and staff have started to build the rows in which hundreds of thousands of trees will be planted.

This year TWP will build reforestation programs along three major lines.  One is growing trees for our network of Forest Replacement Associations, and their farmers.  These farmers grow trees on their land to diversify their income through forest products like fruit, fuel, and in the longer term, lumber.  

The next line is growing trees for demonstration plots at the National Center for Biomass Energy and Climate Change Research, in La Paz Centro, Nicaragua.  We have plans sketched and are developing agroforestry models appropriate to the local climate, soils and hydrology. 

The third and most important, is finding ways to keep our supporters – both individual supporters and corporate partners – appraised of our progress throughout the year.  Global Giving is one great channel through which to do this, but our blog and website are other great sources of information that help us stay connected.

Thank you always for your kind support, and never hesitate to get in touch to see how you or people you know can get more involved in supporting this great project.

Happy holidays from the Trees, Water & People staff!

Nov 30, 2012

TWP Partners with Eastern Shoshone Tribe

3 new Solar Warriors trained!
3 new Solar Warriors trained!

The Eastern Shoshone Tribe’s "477 Employment and Training Program" sent three Solar Warriors to the Red Cloud Renewable Energy Center at the end of October to be trained on building and installing solar heaters.

As part of their training, Trees, Water & People, with the help of donors like you, paid for three new heaters, installed on the homes of families living on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota as part of the hands-on training portion of the course. Each heater will keep over 27 metric tons out of the atmosphere over its 20 year lifespan in addition to saving a low-income Lakota family in Kyle, SD precious utility money.

The Eastern Shoshone tribe also purchased 25 solar air heaters from our partner, Lakota Solar Enterprises. The mission of the tribe's 477 Program is to help unemployed tribal members find work that benefits the entire community. In this case, the tribe is not only employing these three new Solar Warriors, but also providing clean, free heat for 25 elderly and disabled Eastern Shoshone living on the Wind River Reservation. Congrats, Solar Warriors!

In addition, Henry Red Cloud, Trees, Water & People’s partner in operating the Red Cloud Renewable Energy Center, spent last week in Fort Washakie, WY, conducting site visits with the students. I arrived to the reservation just in time to shake the hands of these new green job recipients, Chris Tiger, Richard Bearing, and Michael Timbana. Michael told me that he wants to start his own solar business to help his tribe, and I hope we can help him do that! Richard, who is actually a Northern Arapaho, married to an Eastern Shoshone woman, was unemployed and says of his time with Henry, “It has had a great impact [on my life]. I learned a lot and met some new people that I now call friends. I also have a new job.”

Thanks to the 477 Program for creating these opportunities on your beautiful and historic reservation and congrats to the new Trainees for all they have accomplished.

And, most importantly, thank you to every person that has donated to this project, bringing us one step closer to reaching our goal of building 10 solar heaters for Native American families in need of heat.

Solar Warriors from the Eastern Shoshone Tribe
Solar Warriors from the Eastern Shoshone Tribe
Changing the Tribal Energy approach
Changing the Tribal Energy approach
Solar energy is "a new way to honor the old ways"
Solar energy is "a new way to honor the old ways"

Links:

Sep 11, 2012

Haitian Clean Cookstove Program Expanding Reach

ZPB vendor forum in Port-au-Prince
ZPB vendor forum in Port-au-Prince

Trees, Water & People's Haiti Program Manager, Jean Gabriel, continues to deliver in Port-au-Prince, expanding the Zanmi Pye Bwa (ZPB) sales force to include vendors in four other Haitian cities.  Since our last Global Giving report, hundreds of stoves have been sold, and prototyping work has started on a new double burner cookstove.  From our years of work in the sector, we know that replacing one burner in a biomass fuel-dependent household only solves half the problem. 

The double burner model we are developing is two fuel-efficient charcoal stoves in one body – a solution not currently offered in the Haitian marketplace, apart from those we sell through our vendors.  Our current goal is to bring the cost of this unit down while keeping quality and durability high.  Purchasing power in Haiti’s urban areas is still low, so we work to educate people on how an investment like this pays for itself in a matter of weeks in fuel savings alone.  Results with lay-away and micro-credit have been growing – we know that once the stove is in a users hands, they will not want to return to their previous stoves.

Your donations are what is driving the successes of this program.  Our long-term goals are to make the ZPB a locally owned product, manufactured, marketed and sold by a network of local entrepreneurs.  We are far enough down the road to know that the product is solid and sought after, and now we are focusing on how to make the venture sustainable.  This includes developing a robust market for replacement parts, compiling a network of artisans who can repair and refurbish the stove, and organizing all these entrepreneurs under a common banner, knowing that this gives our program the best chance of expanding long after we are gone. 

The challenge is big, and we can only tackle it with your help.  Thank you for your support!

Clean cookstoves ready for families!
Clean cookstoves ready for families!
Clean cookstove vendor forum
Clean cookstove vendor forum
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