By; ALEX UANGBAOJE, Kaduna
The Women Initiative for Sustainable Environment (WISE), an NGO, said on Wednesday that it would offer a grant of 7, 500 US dollars as start-up capital to 30 women in Kaduna State to run clean cooking stove enterprises.
The WISE Founder and Programme Director, Ms. Olanike Olugboji, made this known in Kaduna, on the sidelines of a five-day training on clean cooking stove enterprise.
Olugboji said, that the 30 women were paired into 15 groups and each would receive 500 dollars as start-up grant.
According to her, the grant would enable the beneficiaries to run clean cooking stove enterprises in their respective communities.
“It is a sustainability plan to make sure that the women start the business and ran it successfully.
“We have linked them up with producers of the product; the amount would, therefore, help them buy the first set of the stoves and start the business.
“We believe that overtime, they would be able to grow the capital and expand gradually.”
She added that additional provision of N150,000 has been set aside as a revolving fund for those who want to scale up.
Recall that the NGO, in partnership with Women’s Earth Alliance (WEA) had in April held the first phase of the the training to build a movement of women entrepreneurs and advocates of clean cooking stoves in their communities.
The project, according to Olugboji, would help to curb deaths resulting from inhalation of smoke from firewood, which she puts at more than 93,000 death annually in the country.
She explained that the second phase of the training, which would end on Friday, was designed to strengthen the women’s marketing strategy in promoting the use of clean cook stove.
According to her, the effort would help in the elimination of firewood and its health hazards, thereby reducing deforestation.
Similarly, a resource person, Ms. Happy Amos, described clean cook stove as “a social enterprise”, not only for its financial gains, but also for its social and environmental impact.
Amos, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Roshan Global Services Ltd, said the clean cooking stove would serve as “a veritable source of income for the women”.
She told journalists that the stove uses charcoal and it’s cheap, energy efficient and would improve women’s health and save the environment.