Making a difference in a community – one family, one cookstove at a time
Since 2012, the United Nations has celebrated October 11 as International Day of the Girl to address the needs and challenges girls face in their everyday lives, while promoting the empowerment and fulfillment of their human rights. Today, the Alliance has the pleasure to highlight the work of two young Ghanaian girls who are making a difference in their communities – one family, one cookstove at a time.
Meet Priscilla Asare
Meet Priscilla Asare, a 17-year-old who sells oranges after school to support her family’s income. Priscilla’s passion for helping her community led her to join the INSPOCCE project (Integrated School Project on Clean Cooking Energy) as a peer educator. On weekends, she leads an advocacy campaign to promote the adoption of clean cookstoves in her community. What drives her passion for clean cooking? She has seen the benefits in her own home.
“I used to cough a lot. My mum and siblings coughed too. I had no idea what it was until I attended the Peer Educators’ training workshop. After our training, I started sensitization at home with my mother. After educating her on the health risks of using traditional cookstoves, I supported her to buy an LPG cookstove for the house using proceeds from the sale of oranges. We now use LPG at home” -Priscilla Asare, Sarpeiman MA Junior High School
Meet Fosua Obeng Amoako
As a Peer Educator, Fosua Obeng Amoako has helped three individuals switch from traditional cookstoves to cleaner and more efficient cookstoves. Her goal is to connect women in commercial cooking businesses to clean cookstove manufacturers through an INSPOCCE Project Coordinator. She finds joy in helping women find solutions to a problem they have been battling for a long time, and feels empowered and confident thanks to her Peer Educator role at INSPOCCE.
“The training I received from this project has helped me a lot. I used to be shy but now my confidence has been built. I don’t feel shy talking to my colleagues and adults. I know my rights and my duty to protect my environment. I am empowered” –Fosua Obeng Omako, Sarpeiman MA JHS
With support from the Alliance, World Education Ghana’s INSPOCCE project has educated 2,000 junior high school students, 60 teachers and school administrator, and over 18,000 community members in the Ga West Municipality, Amasaman on environmental impacts, the dangers of cooking over open fires, and the existence of cleaner, more efficient cooking solutions. The project has also raised awareness about the negative impact of traditional cooking practices among Ghanaian youth, and equipped girls and boys with leadership skills help transitions their own households to cleaner cooking solutions.