Today is International Women’s Day and the theme is #BalanceforBetter. Across the globe organisations and individuals are calling for gender equality: at ClimateCare we know this also has a critical role to play in addressing climate change and creating a more sustainable world.
Our Climate+Care approach
At ClimateCare we develop and support community-based projects which empower women in some of the world’s most vulnerable communities. Supporting women, by improving access to education and financial resources and promoting their involvement in decision-making, is crucial to ensuring climate action is successful, sustainable, and scalable.
Read about two of our projects where women are playing a key role in delivering positive social and environmental outcomes:
BURN Stoves, Kenya
This clean cooking project provides skilled employment to over 200 local people – 60% of whom are women – including in the solar-powered factory where the stoves are made. To support women’s participation in the traditionally male-dominated manufacturing industry Burn have set up targeted initiatives, such as the ‘Women in Engineering’ internship, a women’s leadership programme, and a system of informal mentoring.
The Burn project is also changing lives in the home. By replacing smoky, inefficient stoves and open fires with a market-leading, highly-efficient cookstove, the project reduces the harmful health impacts of indoor air pollution, frees up income and time that would otherwise be spent on fuel and longer cooking times, and combats climate change.
My family is in awe of how I can assemble on my own all the parts that make a BURN jikokoa stove. To them, machinery work is a man’s job. But look at me now: I have gone up the ranks at BURN and today I lead a whole team in ensuring that we make Kenya’s #1 jikos.
Gola Rainforest Conservation, Sierra Leone
The Gola Rainforest project is working with communities to incentivise forest-friendly farming of cocoa beans – the main local commercial crop. This is improving local livelihoods whilst protecting the rainforest in this biodiversity hotspot. One key to success is a new gender-inclusive farmer organisation with 1,800 members. This allows local cocoa producers to process and market their own cocoa beans – including directly to the international consumer market through the RSPB’s Gola Rainforest chocolate bar.
This new organisation ensures that women’s participation is integrated throughout the supply chain, empowering women within their communities. The project also delivers leadership development training for women; providing them with the knowledge, confidence and skills to participate in community-based decision making.
Before Gola, we were always in the kitchen cooking. When Gola came we had training on how to manage the cocoa and there was no segregation, so we were trained in the scaling system. Now we go together with our husbands to the buying office – we watch the scale and know the outcome. We amicably sit down and plan the utilisation; some of this money will be used for housekeeping, some for our children. We are really happy and we embrace the work of Gola.