Severe fighting in Sudan’s Darfur region has forced approximately 2.2 million internally displaced persons (IDPs) to live in densely populated temporary camps. Due to the arid environment and population in the camps fuelwood, which is necessary for cooking food and tea, has become limited in supply. This forces many women and children to leave the safety of their camps to fetch fuelwood from far distances and impose great risk upon themselves.
To address this situation, CHF International has teamed up with the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) at Berkley University to research, design and manufacture more energy efficient stoves for use in IDP camps. To execute the first phase of this program, Visiting International Professional (VIP) Brian Tachibana traveled to Khartoum, Sudan to oversee production of the first 50 stoves. With an education and work experience as an engineer, Brian was able to work with CHF Sudanese staff to simplify the initial stove design to account for material availability and allow greater productivity during the manufacturing process.
In just two weeks, the initial 50 stoves were constructed and then transported to locations in North and South Sudan for testing. Families in IDP camps are now using the stoves on a daily basis and the LBNL team will be able to modify the stove design based upon testing feedback. Initial research shows that these stoves will cut fuelwood usage between 30-50%. This will result in substantial savings of time and money for families during food preparation, especially increasing security for women and children who will not have to travel as often away from the IDP camps.
With his VIP assignment successfully completed, Brian dreams of returning to Sudan in ten years time to see the changes to the country. In the meantime, he continues to work with LBNL to provide guidance and insight as the program expands to the next phase of implementation. Soon another engineering expert will travel to Sudan to begin mass production of 5,000 additional stoves to benefit greater numbers of IDPs.