World Vision Kenya places child well-being at the core of its strategy and programming. The organization together with Umande Trust partnership, the project seeks to contribute to utilization of clean energy for fuel and lighting in Kakuma Refugee Secondary School primarily through the utilization of human waste as an alternative source of energy.
This is through collection of biogas (methane) from the waste using a digester that breaks down the human waste and converts it to bio gas through an anaerobic process. This provides a source of fuel for cooking and lighting for the school.
This project provides a solution for solid waste management by reducing pollution to water bodies, the environment and deforestation, while also generating biogas for cooking and lighting thus reducing the use of fossil fuels
Due to the above aforementioned an exchange visit to Mukuru kayaba took place on 10th February 2016, the delegation from Kakuma comprised of a total of 11 members including teachers, student and school management committee .The exchange visit took place at the KUUM bio centre which is a community setup with the lighting and cooking using the bio gas option.
The following were the objectives of the sensitization session training
1) Information on operations and maintenance of the bio center and sanitation facilities.
2) Learning through seeing how the system operates and is maintained
3) Share experience and ideas on how the bio-digester works in a school set up and explore business options suitable for the project.
The team had a couple of questions on the functionality of the bio digester and lighting system
- is the gas hot enough to cook for a school population of nearly 2000 students
- will the smell of the gas affect the school children
- Is the gas going to pollute the environment and harm the community members and the school children?
- what will happen to the gas during the school holidays
- how will they be able to detect a gas leakage in the system
- How many watts are the bulbs used in lighting
- Can the system be used in charging of electronics such as phones, radio, and television
- What is the mass of sludge required to produce 1m (cubic) gas?
- How long does the lighting system operates
- Where is the bio gas bulb is bought and the cookers and at how much
The team was taken through the system in Kuum and Rueben Vision and they saw the gas in use at the facility. The team was taken through a technical training session where they were taken through:
- The various components of a bio digester
- The construction process of a digester
- How the toilets are linked to the digester and in turn the digester is linked to the septic tank
- The gas connection from the digester to the kitchen
- The anaerobic process that occurs in the digester
- The operation manual of the bio sanitation system
- The components of biogas
- The properties of the components of biogas
- Answers to the questions that had been raised at the beginning of the session
At the end of the day the team members had understood most of the processes that go on in the bio digester and how to maintain the toilets and the kitchen facilities in order to have maximum production of gas.
Business options Umande had in mind were not viable since the school set up is in a refugee camp and is more of humanitarian aid than business.
Written By: Grace Odeya