Rural women in Uganda bet on bamboo charcoal production
The last training session in Uganda is promoting home-based bamboo charcoal production to create new livelihood opportunities.
INBAR innovative household charcoal production aims to turn ‘bamboo firewood’ cooking into a new livelihood opportunity and a sustainable value chain for the economic empowerment of poor rural women in Uganda. Throughout its NGO, Community, and Professional Partnership (NCPP), this social enterprise model creates an innovative and inclusive system that strengthens the rural development ecosystem to enable safe investment opportunities for rural women.
The key project implementation strategy for INBAR over the years has been to make use of multisectoral partnerships in its projects’ activities. Following these steps, the Dutch-Sino, East Africa Phase II bamboo development programme that is organizing this capacity building in Uganda, has recently partnered with two local private companies, Josa Green Technology and Hoima Caritas Development Organisation for conducting training on household bamboo charcoal production.
The training brought 82 representatives drawn from NGOs, local cluster households’ communities and professional briquette-making enterprises, to launch a tripartite business model. The training aimed to impart awareness to women on how bamboo charcoal that is often a waste product in a household kitchen can be processed into charcoal briquettes for market supply. The women were trained on how to put out fires when they had finished cooking to prevent smouldering, how to collect household charcoal through the clusters, and how to process it into briquettes. It was also presented, success stories of farmers from India to demonstrate how the livelihoods of rural households can be improved and diversified through bamboo-based economic activities.
Besides, a woman-led microenterprise was formulated that would generate local income supply to the women groups and promote a sustained supply of bamboo resources production. The training was successful in terms of a positive step towards a value chain development of charcoal briquette enterprise that can be promoted as an alternative source of energy.