Building on the Bamboo Pilot Project that ran from 2013-2016 in Maranga County, Kenya, we are thrilled to again be partnering with Waterstone, a like-minded NGO with an outstanding skillset. Together we are developing a new bamboo initiative that will increase local livelihoods and protect wildlife habitats in multiple regions across Kenya.
Located in the Great Lakes Region of Eastern Africa, Kenya is split geographically into almost perfect quarters – the equator separates its north and south halves, while the Great Rift Valley delineates its east and west sections. It is bordered by the Indian Ocean to the east and Lake Victoria and Uganda to the west. According to the 2019 census, Kenya’s population is just over 47 million people with agriculture, manufacturing, and mining as the main industries. Kenya’s national poverty rate is estimated to be around 40%.
While livelihoods in Kenya have been steadily increasing, as reported in the Kenya Integrated Housing Budget Survey and World Bank Reports, the country still faces challenges, especially in areas of youth and women’s empowerment. Stunting and impoverishment rates for children under 5 remain high, at 30% and 70% respectively. About 75% of married women are employed, compared to 99% of married men – and of those women who are employed, 20% receive no pay whatsoever. And, as it pertains to our programming, 85% of rural households exclusively use firewood for cooking.
Kenya’s lands are 80% arid/semi-arid, leading to a concentrated population in the countries ‘wet’ areas. Based on reports from the World Bank and US-AID, climate variability and population growth have led to environmental shocks including deforestation, soil erosion, desertification, as well as more severe droughts, floods, and landslides. These challenges have gone on to increase natural resource, economic, and habitat loss, food insecurity, and pressure on remaining healthy ecosystems – unfortunately restarting the cycle.
What are our goals in Kenya?
PBR is working with our partners to use bamboo as a catalyst to drive economic and environmental improvement, and to develop a safer, more efficient cookstove.
Our B4G programming aims to establish bamboo nurseries that will scale into full bamboo plantations. Growing bamboo and developing its usefulness at the local level will provide income opportunities for youth and women, and protect the Maasai Tribe’s land and resources.
The use of firewood as a cooking fuel is prevalent across Kenya. Unfortunately, constantly burning wood pollutes indoor air to unhealthy levels and depletes forests quickly. With our partners, we will develop and distribute a cookstove that uses bamboo and biochar as safer, more efficient alternatives to hardwood.
The increase of bamboo availability and cookstove adoption, in turn, will restore forests and farmland, secure food production, and protect wildlife habitats.
We hope our mission speaks to you.
Help us grow new opportunities.
Pacific Bamboo Resources
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