Ms Esther Bakasba is a Student Under the REBi Scholarship Program offering a National diploma in Electrical engineering at UTC Bushenyi. She used her acquired Renewable Energy (RE) skills to reduce on her parents’ domestic expenses that were spent on charcoal fuel. Esther who through her newfound passion (Renewable Energy), engaged her self and neighbours in producing hand moulded charcoal briquette balls using locally available materials such as charcoal dust, clay and cow dung which she obtained from the neighbourhood for free. She started implementing it as a home project during the Covid-19 lockdown in Uganda since she was home for the long school break. The family uses the briquettes at their home in Kirinya Buyogwere central region of Uganda for their cooking and her mother loves them because they burn longer than bought charcoal and are free.
The use of the charcoal briquettes has provided a saving on the domestic expenses her mother said. ‘It has enabled the family to stretch a bag of charcoal for fifty thousand shillings (50,000/=) that used to be for 2 weeks to a full month”. Esther’s RE project means she is now contributing a saving of fifty thousand shillings (50,000/=) on household expenses. She has also spread the impact on the community.
Esther has also trained five (5) children and five (5) women in the neighbourhood who are also making briquettes for their home use. She plans to standardize her production by measuring out the materials, test and compare the performances of her products based on the burnt rate, light rate and the smoke rate. REBi will further provide her with technical support to ensure that she improves on her products and where possible nurture her idea into an RE business startup.
Esther saves the family on domestic fuel expenses and contributes towards saving the environment as she reduces human pressure on the green cover.
This was made possible by REBi limited with funding support from the Royal Norwegian Embassy in Kampala under the project: Vocational Training for Job Creation in the Renewable Energy Value Chain in Uganda.