The women of Los Chilitos
The following is a postcard from Lydia Sorensen, GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Representative in Guatemala, about her recent visit to Hunger Relief International.
Down the hill from where the new community school is being built, a group of 20 women gather to meet with the Hunger Relief International staff. In this community with approximately 200 children and their families, these women are soon going to be receiving new, sustainable, stoves. Soon they will be able to make hot food for their families without worrying about filling their houses with smoke or burning themselves over the open fires.
A few miles away is another community that has already received their stoves. The women proudly show them off (all have something cooking on top), and talk about the difference that it’s made in their lives. “Before I used to burn myself on the smoke, all the time” says one recipient, “now it’s much better”. By using less wood but producing as much (if not more) heat, the stoves are also both more economical and also more environmentally friendly.
Joselito (the local mason hired to construct the stoves) will work the women of Los Chilitos during the next month hopefully making one new stove a day. The women agree to provide someone to help him carry the heavy materials, and pay a small fraction of the cost, and they eagerly congregate to pick a number from a bag that will be the order in which they receive their stove. 20, 12, 7, 13…it’s down to the last woman who triumphantly thrusts her number in the air “One!”
Picking their number
A woman with her sustainable stove