our past, current and future

EVENTS & PROJECTS

RUWES past projects

The Place of Sanctuary and Hope (POSH)

The POSH (Place of Sanctuary and Hope) is a place of safety and comfort for internally displaced women and young girls living in camps or remote areas that are currently unable to embark on their normal productive daily activities as a result of forced displacement. The POSH is designed to provide access to clean energy (access to alternative, safe cooking, lighting and heating sources) for the internally displaced Women and girls in the North Eastern part of the nation with focus on Borno State. This intervention is targeted at reintegrating them into the Society making them productive, while healing the pain of insurgency suffered.

Through the POSH RUWES intends to develop clean energy access and rural entrepreneurs, provide sources of livelihood through the establishment of a clean energy Bakery, solar freezers, sewing machines and clean energy business starter kits. The POSH training centre in Maiduguri for women and girls of insurgency is a facility that has the capacity to train over 1,000 women and girls every 3 months. The skills and small businesses to be developed at the POSH training centre include; trainings on the use of clean energy / solar bakery, assembly of solar lanterns and clean cookstoves, production of clay pot-water filtration and purification system, detergent and soap making as well as training on use of solar sewing machines.

The POSH is a social business enterprise with minimal profit to lift women out of poverty. The repayment plan in this project will be through the POSH Bakery’ and sale of pastries at designated outlets within the city. Furthermore, the Borno State Government has committed to the sustainability of the POSH through consistent supplies of bread to boarding secondary schools, as well as patronize the POSH tile cleaners, detergents sand disinfectants in all Government offices, hospitals and schools within the State. The grandaunts of the POSH training centre are equipped with a clean energy starter kits to enable them start up small businesses in their villages.

The project is intended to be implemented in the North Eastern part of the country.

Development of Skills Acquisition Centres

The RUWES Initiative works to establish well equipped Skills Acquisition Centres and Clean Energy facilities for rural women and girls that will continuously enable the women to learn new skills such as producing alternative sources of energy from waste, assembling solar lanterns and clean cookstoves as well as repairs, operation & maintenance, sales and distribution of clean energy products. Synergizing capacity enhancement with our viable business models, we develop clean energy entrepreneurs capable of maintaining and distributing clean energy products in their communities.

We have established three (3) skills acquisition centres for Agricultural communities in Nigeria.  These centres in Baruten and Kaiama LGA of Kwara State and one in Bwari Local Government Area in the Federal Capital Territory have been equipped with solar dyers and solar grinders and have made accessible to rural farmers as an alternative to their dependence on the grid connections. This would enable them achieve their agricultural processes of drying and preserving a variety of crops with the products having a shelf life of 1year.

Through the POSH RUWES intends to develop clean energy access and rural entrepreneurs, provide sources of livelihood through the establishment of a clean energy Bakery, solar freezers, sewing machines and clean energy business starter kits. The POSH training centre in Maiduguri for women and girls of insurgency is a facility that has the capacity to train over 1,000 women and girls every 3 months. The skills and small businesses to be developed at the POSH training centre include; trainings on the use of clean energy / solar bakery, assembly of solar lanterns and clean cookstoves, production of clay pot-water filtration and purification system, detergent and soap making as well as training on use of solar sewing machines.

The POSH is a social business enterprise with minimal profit to lift women out of poverty. The repayment plan in this project will be through the POSH Bakery’ and sale of pastries at designated outlets within the city. Furthermore, the Borno State Government has committed to the sustainability of the POSH through consistent supplies of bread to boarding secondary schools, as well as patronize the POSH tile cleaners, detergents sand disinfectants in all Government offices, hospitals and schools within the State. The grandaunts of the POSH training centre are equipped with a clean energy starter kits to enable them start up small businesses in their villages.

The project is intended to be implemented in the North Eastern part of the country.

Climate Smart Agriculture

The relevance of Agriculture to the Nigerian economy cannot be over emphasized; however, with growing impacts of agricultural practices on climate change, there is a need to embrace Climate Smart Agriculture. In our efforts to develop valuable business models aimed at creating a financial value chain for the rural woman, by providing her with the necessary tools (access to capital, skills and capacity building) needed to improve her sources of livelihood as well as create successful and sustainable businesses we are in partnership with the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development for the introduction of Climate Smart Agriculture. The goal of this are;

  • Capacity Enhancement: thoroughly train RUWES State and Local Coordinators in Climate Smart Agriculture practices and get them to further train women cooperatives and organizations within every state.
  • Introduction of Green Technology: Establishment of green houses, solar dryers, solar grinders, mobile bio-digesters and utilization of agricultural waste such as briquette for cooking and biogas for cooking and electricity generation.
  • Entrepreneurial Skills Acquisition: Train Local and State Coordinators as well as women groups and cooperatives on crop yield projection and distribution, book keeping and crop audit as well as training on basic information on weather and adaptation strategies to changing climate patterns.

RUWES Randa

The “RUWES Randa” is a technology-neutral water filtration and purification system which consists of a screen, water filter and a water dispensing unit made of clay pot. This is a locally developed technology that guarantees water purification, elimination of water contamination from dipping of cups and promotes hygiene/ sanitation in rural communities.

Dissemination of RUWES Randa will promote rural water hygiene, reduce mortality rate resulting from contaminated sources of water and water borne diseases and reduce illnesses from emissions of Short-Lived Climate Pollutants (SLCP’s) through the use of firewood to boil water and Hydro Fluoro-Carbons (HFCs) for cooling in refrigerants.

The RUWES Initiative is in partnership with the Federal Ministry of Water Resources to propagate this indigenous technology for water purification that saves energy, provides good health and protect the environment for rural communities.

  • Capacity Enhancement: thoroughly train RUWES State and Local Coordinators in Climate Smart Agriculture practices and get them to further train women cooperatives and organizations within every state.
  • Introduction of Green Technology: Establishment of green houses, solar dryers, solar grinders, mobile bio-digesters and utilization of agricultural waste such as briquette for cooking and biogas for cooking and electricity generation.
  • Entrepreneurial Skills Acquisition: Train Local and State Coordinators as well as women groups and cooperatives on crop yield projection and distribution, book keeping and crop audit as well as training on basic information on weather and adaptation strategies to changing climate patterns.

RUWES - Project Surya Partnership

In line with RUWES’ efforts to mitigate Short-Lived Climate Pollutants (SLCPs) through clean energy and results-based financing, we entered into a partnership with Project Surya of India. The RUWES-Surya collaboration aligns with both organizations’ established commitment and approach to increasing clean energy use and mitigating climate change. Project Surya has developed the first methodology to quantify Black Carbon (BC) reductions from cookstoves to be adopted by a carbon market (the Gold Standard Foundation) to maximize climate-based payments for use of improved stoves.

The project utilizes an innovative financing system that enables the extremely poor rural women afford clean cookstoves through carbon credit. The carbon credit serves to reduce the cost of the cookstoves, rewards the end user and ultimately serves as a repayment model for the stove through climate credits earned from the mitigation of black carbon.

The RUWES-Surya partnership has the combined expertise to create sustainable models for after-sales maintenance and technical support. This is driven by objective results from the field through the use of sensors and real time evaluation through the installation of chips that data of clean cookstoves usage through the server. This intervention will make a large-scale shift to clean stoves possible while creating a self-sustaining ecosystem for developing, marketing, and financing improved cookstoves in Nigeria.

In October 2016, the Climate and Clean Air Coalition’s Solution Centre supported an exchange between a group of RUWES women and Project Surya to learn how rural women in Odisha, India are transitioning to clean household energy. They met with women in three villages where they saw different clean cookstove technologies, spoke to rural development organizations about different strategies to finance their own projects, and saw the impact the projects have had on people’s lives.

Of particular interest to the women was how mobile technology is helping women afford clean cooking technology. In the villages of Keonjhar and Notarpali they saw how sensors connected to cookstoves transmit information via a mobile network to show how often and how long clean cookstoves are used. This helps the organization Nexleaf Analytics quantify how much black carbon and carbon dioxide is prevented from being emitted into the atmosphere. This is then translated into ‘climate credits’, which enable women to get payments for using their stoves. 

This Innovative Climate Finance has been tried and tested in India and RUWES has benefitted from a peer review for the entire process, leading to the commencement of a pilot in Nigeria (Marraraban Burum in Apo Local Government Area and Katampe Village in Mpape District of Bwari Area Council), where they will be comparing two different stoves in 100 households in 2018. Tara Ramanathan, Nexleaf Program Director, hopes this will help identify the type of cookstoves women prefer using and ultimately improve the health of Nigerians and protect the climate.

Due to huge potential of the market we intend to scale up this project. In Nigeria a group of rural women are taking bold action to protect themselves and their families from dangerous air pollution. The Rural Women Energy Security (RUWES), with a broad base of over 2 million Nigerian women, are taking control of household clean energy usage by creating clean energy enterprises, training women in the manufacturing and maintenance of clean cookstoves and solar systems; and creating a network of women entrepreneurs to provide affordable clean energy solutions across the country.  

Household air pollution in Nigeria causes approximately 95,000 premature deaths each year. Women, who do most of the cooking, and their children are most vulnerable. The main culprits are kerosene lighting and simple cookstoves that burn firewood, both of which produce smoke laden with black carbon and microscopic particles (also known as particulate matter: PM2.5) that penetrate deep into the body causing respiratory and cardiovascular diseases.

RUWES is also creating a viable market and sustainable supply chain for clean energy technologies to provide a source of income for women by helping them become clean energy entrepreneurs, and to supply energy for homes and small businesses. It is helping women access finance for business incubation and entrepreneurship. The Market Women Association of Nigeria and its entire membership-base of over 700,000 women joined RUWES with the aim of ensuring the ready availability of clean energy products to mostly rural and peri-urban communities.

Helena Molin Valdes, Head of the UN Environment hosted Climate and Clean Air Coalition Secretariat, said RUWES is empowering women to lead Nigeria’s adoption of clean energy. “These women are an inspiration for other women around the world. They are changing the way Nigerians think about where they get energy from. And they are not only improving the lives of their families but are among the leaders in their country’s effort to move away from polluting energy sources,” Ms Molin Valdes said. “This network of over 2 million women that are supporting each other, working as entrepreneurs and mobilizers, learning from women groups in other countries and bringing that knowledge home.”

According to the World Health Organization, 3 billion people cook and heat their homes using open fires and simple stoves. The smokes from these fires have deleterious impact on the environment and health. Every year over 4 million people die prematurely from illness attributable to the household air pollution.

Dissemination of RUWES Randa will promote rural water hygiene, reduce mortality rate resulting from contaminated sources of water and water borne diseases and reduce illnesses from emissions of Short-Lived Climate Pollutants (SLCP’s) through the use of firewood to boil water and Hydro Fluoro-Carbons (HFCs) for cooling in refrigerants.

The RUWES Initiative is in partnership with the Federal Ministry of Water Resources to propagate this indigenous technology for water purification that saves energy, provides good health and protect the environment for rural communities.

  • Capacity Enhancement: thoroughly train RUWES State and Local Coordinators in Climate Smart Agriculture practices and get them to further train women cooperatives and organizations within every state.
  • Introduction of Green Technology: Establishment of green houses, solar dryers, solar grinders, mobile bio-digesters and utilization of agricultural waste such as briquette for cooking and biogas for cooking and electricity generation.
  • Entrepreneurial Skills Acquisition: Train Local and State Coordinators as well as women groups and cooperatives on crop yield projection and distribution, book keeping and crop audit as well as training on basic information on weather and adaptation strategies to changing climate patterns.

Partnership with Department for International Development - Nigerian Infrastructure Advisory Facility (DFID/NIAF)

The UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) has developed a working Monitoring and Evaluation as well as a Management Information System toolkit for the RUWES initiative. The Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) System is critical to RUWES in carrying out its projects effectively and efficiently and boosting accountability to beneficiaries, donors and other stakeholders.

The M&E system will help RUWES ensure that funds are used as intended and that projects are implemented as planned. In the long-run, it can provide information required to determine whether the program/intervention achieved its objectives. In addition to that, the M&E system allows entities or programs to obtain real-time information from the field to verify and evaluate the impact on beneficiaries as well as provides opportunities for dialogue between the entity and stakeholders and will allow RUWES to have an accurate understanding of activities and results.

RUWES Stakeholders Workshop

The RUWES Initiative Stakeholders workshop is an annual event organized to address and sensitize the rural women who are the end users of these clean cookstoves and who also are most vulnerable to the hazardous effects of domestic utilizing fossil and wood fuel. The workshop brings together beneficiaries of the initiative, technical partners and manufacturers of clean energy items. The workshop is a feedback mechanism and a means of involving these beneficiaries in the design of the clean energy technologies.

RUWES “Woman 2 Woman” Campaign

This is a self-help campaign to stimulate busianess and collaboration amongst women to champion and lead the green energy revolution. This model involves training a rural woman on the basics of clean energy entrepreneurship, she in turn trains 10 different rural women, and upon graduation, she receives a RUWES starter kit while each of the 10 trainees receives a small RUWES package. The campaign was flagged off by the Honourable Minister of Environment, the Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Environment and the wife of the Ambassador of the United States in Nigeria.

RUWES/G-WIN Partnership

The RUWES initiative was incorporated into the Girl and Women Initiative in Nigeria (GWIN) Initiative to achieve the common objectives of gender empowerment, energy access, improved health and environmental protection. The G-WIN was launched by the Federal Ministry of Finance in response to empowering women and girls specifically. The G-WIN project aims to empower self-reliance and sufficiency, create employment as well as alleviate poverty through the provision of access to funds for girls and women. The G-WIN/RUWES Partnership will scale up the on-going RUWES empowerment activities in various States across the country.

RUWES - Local Government Area Partnership (Kaura Namoda)

The RUWES Local Government Partnership is aimed at engaging the stakeholders at the roots; the Local Government level, in achieving the objectives of RUWES. In a bid to scale up access to clean energy for women in the rural Zamfara state, and with support from its development partners, a pilot of the RUWES-LGA Partnership was implemented in Kaura Namoda Local government of the State in September, 2014, the first of its type.

Three (3) Women Business Membership Organizations (BMO) were selected and the members of each BMO was given technical skills on how to run a business, the use and benefits of clean energy products and each BMO was further equipped with a RUWES Starter kit each consisting of a motorised tricycle, eco-boxes, clean cookstoves, and solar lighting equipments. 1,990 beneficiaries were impacted by the distribution of these clean energy products.

RUWES ASO Lady Purse

In partnership with ASO Savings bank, the RUWES has designed a savings scheme for the rural women. The cooperatives registered with RUWES open accounts for each member with the financial institution. A percentage of the sales of the RUWES kits are deposited with the bank. This entitles each registered member to receive a loan from the bank.

RUWES Smokeless Barracks Scheme

In a bid to further strengthen the RUWES initiative as a national project in the actualization of its set objectives, the initiative is in partnership with the Federal Road Safety Corps to mobilize Officers of paramilitary agencies as well as wives of officers of every paramilitary agency in our sensitization efforts. Due to the high volume of firewood used for cooking in the barracks and dependence on diesel generators and kerosene lanterns for household lighting, we have identified the barracks as a target area for access to cleaner, cheaper and safer cooking and lighting energy.

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