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Taking stock
 
Robert V. Lange
Robert V. Lange
  

 
Since 2009,  the ICSEE has been working with the Maasai, and it continues to be a wonderful and productive experience. 

We are not a "stove" project in a narrow sense, but continually approach the work in new ways. 

What really guides and drives us? 
Read below for insight into our approach, and the latest news. 

Your interest, good will, and support continue to make all the difference. Thank you.
 

Twende!

Robert V. Lange 
July,  2017

 

Honoring our roots-stoves and solar
 
 
Widows are employed at ICSEE corn flour mill, run by the women
As we enter our eighth year, we continue to find ourselves affected by a situation shared by many communities. All around us, those with limited financial resources have not had the opportunity to implement
 
The ICSEE introduces options for improving conditions, trains women and men to evaluate and implement these options, and develops leaders. We provide resources and fresh, imaginative approaches to practical solutions.
 
 
Establishing relationships
 
Once good relationships are established with the communities through work in one sector, clean cookstoves, we find it becomes natural for the collaboration to go into new sectors that need attention. 
 
Our continuous involvement with Project communities is a hallmark of our work. As earlier projects are sustained, our participation as partners in community-based activities introduces us to the next challenge. 
 
Maasai Stoves & Solar Community Meeting

Initiating the pattern
 
At the beginning, the Maasai Stoves & Solar Project spent a year and a half designing a good, efficient smoke-removing chimney stove that the women really want and use. And we continue adding villages, with each one bringing ten more women trained and empowered as the new stove installers.
 
Introducing a new village 
 
Project Leaders Kisika and Kone joined the field trip, described below
 
We find new villages in a variety of ways.  One of the most gratifying is when a new friend, such as a tourist visitor, finds us and tells us of a Maasai village where they have spent some time and have some special friends. And when the new friend sees how much our stove and electric lights make a difference for the people, they find ways to connect us with the new village.
 
We thank the generous donor who has brought us to the village of Nainukanuka, the "village in the clouds", near the rim of the Ngorongoro crater. In the Ngorongoro conservation area, special permits are needed to bring in the bricks and cement. Those permits are now in hand and we've begun the work. 



Chimney installation Maasai Stoves _ Solar 
Rooted in stoves and solar--and so much more
 


 
  
Maasai men and their livestock management practices
 
In our previous issue, we told you about the experience of the drought in January. During that time, many Maasai herders lost significant numbers of cows. The ICSEE was convinced it was a good time to help the men think critically about their livestock management practices. 
 
Maasai cattle herders
 
Kisioki, our manager and himself a success in managing cattle, knows that  individualistic practices of the herders (including large herds) will not succeed, as population increases and weather becomes less predictable.
 
Greater access to resources
 
Kisioki presenting his findings

As we reported, Kisioki's research led him to Maasai in southern Kenya. Those herders  look at cattle as something to raise and "harvest" to maintain fixed size herds. In this way, healthy surviving cattle are sustained, and the owners begin to participate more fully in the money economy. This gives families increased access to education, health care, home improvement, and transportation.
 
The story continues
 
After a few ICSEE representatives went to Kenya to meet these innovators, Kisioki organized a meeting of 30 Maasai leaders and herdsmen where we presented and discussed the field trip the ICSEE organized for them.
 
Lecture at the Noongishu Conservancy
 
The trip was very stimulating.  46 Maasai men went to the Noongishu Conservancy and had a wonderful two-hour lecture with Powerpoint presentations. Then they visited the herds,  managed in new collective ways that make rational land use plans possible.
 
The very top leaders from the Rift Valley attended, including six village chairmen, several traditional leaders, and members of the district council. They are now planning the next meeting to implement the knowledge which they received in the Maasai Mara.
 
Maasai Stoves _ Solar cattle project
Men viewing new cattle breed on Kenyan field trip
 
  We want to keep learning, leading, and teaching. Effective ways to get through the increasing dry periods must be integrated into good cattle care. 
 
A new feedlot
 
Contributing to this learning process, the ICSEE is providing a feedlot near corn farms that have waste that makes good food for cows. We will cooperate with the herders to learn how to use such facilities to maximize their potential. 
 
One of our generous collaborating donors provided the funds for this feedlot. We've already purchased 6.5 acres of excellent land in the Rift Valley for that purpose, and have begun fence and facility construction. See the area on the map below, located towards the top, just north of Babati and Lake Manyara, between Arusha and the Ngorongoro Conservation area. 
 
New ICSEE land
New land-just north of Lake Manyara (northern Tanzania)
 


 
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Mila Kisika cooking with her Maaasai Stoves & Solar stove, Photo/Philip Lange  
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