Tanzania Posts

Video: A Solar Bakery Run by Women in Tanzania

Posted Monday 23 July 2018 by Eva Wissenz.

We are thrilled to share this film showing how these Tanzanian Entrepreneur Women are using our SOL5 technology to run their bakery. Listen to their testimony after a year of solar baking in their village!

This project was possible in cooperation with Global Resource Alliance and with the support of Wärtsilä and Autodesk Foundation.

Check out our Impact and CSR section for cooperation with NGOs, sponsors and corporate philantropy.

Update from Musoma, Tanzania

Posted Thursday 1 February 2018 by Eva Wissenz.

After three months of rainy weather, the sun is back in Musoma and Alpha Women’s group is back with delicious solar baked breads! We’ve just got pictures from our partner, Global Resource Alliance.

Alpha Women’s group used improved cook-stoves and kettles to bake scones, for themselves and their families, approximately twice per week, and was looking to increase production to sell bread to other villagers. After implementation of the SOL5 in June 2017, the group began to use the SOL5 baking oven up to five times per week, and started selling their baking products to new customers.

Their business started immediately in June 2017, right after the installation. We have installed a hybrid machine for that group and in the future we may see the group is diversifying their activities to processing roasted beans, which was not planned at beginning but possible with our hybrid technology.

This entrepreneurial group is very motivated and even though they did not have extensive business experience, the data is showing clearly that the training is good and the installed solar concentrator is in regular use when it’s sunny and not too cloudy.

It will be interesting to see in subsequent data analysis the impact of the SOL5 on their income generation. Data collection and analysis is continuing with more investigation on the economics of the group’s solar thermal entrepreneurship.

People are very curious about the SOL5, and many want to get one. We are actively working with our partners to implement our activity locally to spread the SOL5 technology as much as possible.

Wärtsilä’s video introducing our project

Posted Thursday 18 January 2018 by Eva Wissenz.

After a year of cooperation in East Africa, Wärtsilä Corp. is promoting our initiative in their own words.

Watch their video presenting our work in Tanzania and Kenya:

Flagship video of projects in Kenya and Tanzania

Posted Tuesday 31 October 2017 by Eva Wissenz.

After a year of operation with support of our sponsor and with our local partners, we are happy to present our achievements in Kenya and Tanzania.

Our local partners are ensuring the follow up of the project as well as data collection to prepare scale up.

Several communities have been equipped with our SOL5 device and have successfully adopted the technology to bake, roast peanuts or dehydrate fish, increasing income, decreasing charcoal use and improving working conditions.

It has been an exciting and challenging year and all the team contributed to make it a success, welcoming also new motivated people to make this world a better place for all.

Download our manifesto, "Direct Solar Economy" for free!

Very dynamic solar bakers in Tanzania

Posted Tuesday 10 October 2017 by Heikki Lindfors.

Buy what’s available, refine it, sell it for profit. Do it over and over again and support your family and community. This seems to be the operating model of the Tujijenge group working in the Makoko neighborhood in Musoma, Tanzania. They do all kinds of value-adding food processing, depending on what is available to them. That’s exactly the entrepreneurial spirit we like at GoSol!

When GoSol’s Heikki and Lorin met the Tujijenge group for the first time in May 2017, they were making their own charcoal to roast fish, cassava, and peanuts, as well as for baking. During this meeting we realized that this is an ideal group for GoSol’s SOL5 hybrid baking oven/roaster model. As they were running diverse entrepreneurial activities already before tapping into solar energy, we were sure they’d come up with many, many uses for their SOL5 so they can save money and stop using charcoal.

Tujijenge is a group of ten women and three men. They get all kinds of fresh foods, process them and sell them for a better price.
Teach a man to fish and he'll feed himself for a lifetime, they say. At GoSol we want all of humanity to have free solar energy.

And we were not disappointed: The group adopted the technology within the first two days. The men in the group grabbed wrenches to learn how to assemble and maintain the solar concentrator. Meanwhile, the ladies of the group gathered to discuss what uses they have for it. Baking was an obvious starting point, as they were already very experienced with it. But as they are also roasting, we are eager to return to the group soon and see what uses they have come up for the roasting drum!

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Global Resource Alliance and GoSol in Tanzania

Posted Wednesday 27 September 2017 by Heikki Lindfors.

Global Resource Alliance (GRA) is a small international NGO located in Musoma, Tanzania. They work on issues of orphan care, water supply, permaculture, herbal medicine, reforestation and sustainable household energy use – which are all pressing issues in Tanzania. The GoSol team is a big fan of sustainable activities and appropriate technologies, so working together with GRA was a logical choice when GoSol was starting its operations in Tanzania.

The country is in dire need of such sustainable activities. Deforestation is a slowly but steadily occurring environmental disaster – as people have used the original forests for firewood, the price of this commodity has skyrocketed, and there is just a fraction of natural forests left. There are not enough clean water resources for the rapidly growing population. And the basic needs of thousands of orphans require special attention of caring individuals – such as from GRA’s employees.

Global Resource Alliance (GRA) personnel drilling a well. (Photo: GRA)
Global Resource Alliance (GRA)'s Training Centre produces food for 35 families. (Photo: GRA)

GRA is active in Musoma, the capital of Tanzania’s Mara region, and across from Lake Victoria at a remote village called Kinesi. Most of GRA’s personnel and volunteers work in their Musoma office. They do their agricultural projects at surrounding communities, and conduct water surveying and drilling in nearby regions. The local orphans gather at their office every Saturday, to receive food and educational materials. At Kinesi there is a permaculture training centre, where GRA employees and volunteers work together with orphans, to grow food for 35 families.

GoSol arrived to Tanzania in May 2017. Our collaboration with GRA was in full swing from the start, as GoSol was representing its technology besides GRA at Butiama’s annual Environmental Expo. The expo is the most important annual forum for environmental organizations is Tanzania.

GRA volunteer Sliafrank Shaushi introducing the SOL5 at Butiama Environmental Expo.

GoSol also worked with GRA artisans, to manufacture locally the first two SOL5 solar concentrators in Tanzania. Working with these skilled professionals was a delight and immediate success. Even tough there were language barriers, as the artisans spoke Swahili, and GoSol’s project managers English, these motivated professionals managed to fabricate the solar concentrators in record time because of our improved visual instruction material and construction guide that manages to bypass such language barriers.

Constructing solar concentrators with GRA artisans.

Global Resource Alliance and GoSol worked together in May and June 2017. During this time, we witnessed they are a professional, deeply devoted and passionate group working to make Tanzania a better place for the people, environment and children. We are very happy to continue our collaboration with GRA, to benefit the Tanzanian people and environment!

The First Solar Bakery in Tanzania

Posted Sunday 10 September 2017 by Heikki Lindfors.

Gosol arrived to Tanzania in June 2017, with the goal to replicate the success of the SOL5 solar concentrators that they had in Kenya and other countries. The very first oven was featured in Butiama Environmental Expo, where many visitors enjoyed this new technology and where it was visited by the vice president of Tanzania, Samia Suluhu.

The two first SOL5 solar concentrators in Tanzania came with a baking oven. And this solar oven has a design improvement: The user can put in a roasting drum, turning the oven into a peanut roaster.

Showcasing the SOL5 Hybrid Oven/Roaster device at the expo.

The SOL5 was first introduced to the users at the Butiama Environmental Expo. Monica and Joyce of the Alpha Women’s Group from Musoma, Tanzania, were baking all weekend and selling their solar baked goodies to visitors.

After the expo, the Alpha Women’s Group received the SOL5 solar concentrator to their compound. The group consists of ten women, who bake for themselves as well as sell to their neighbors in the suburbs of Musoma town. Musoma is the capital of the Mara region of Tanzania, and the town is located on a peninsula in the shores of Lake Victoria. We were introduced to them through our local partner Global Resource Alliance - Tanzania.

Before the SOL5, the Alpha Women’s Group used to burn charcoal to run their bakery business.

The Alpha Women's Group produces bread and cakes made from wheat and kassava flour.
Before, they burned charcoal to bake their bread.
Bread is in high demand in the area.

The Alpha Group has previously been baking for their own needs and for their neighbors. The group used to bake with charcoal 2-3 times a week. Until now, the baking hasn’t been a serious business endeavor. However, in their first weeks of solar baking, they increased their baking to five times per week. They don’t need to pay for charcoal anymore and they can buy baking ingredients instead. The elimination of fuel cost has increased their business productivity, and now they are selling more breads to more people, making the group the first real bakery business in their neighborhood.

First solar baker of the country!

Buying charcoal is part of a poverty trap, and free solar energy creates new entrepreneurship.

Preparing the freshly baked solar bread for selling.

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