News Biogas plants and light for the Maasai

Meeting with Massai men at large gathering

As the keeping of large herds in Kenya in the classic grazing system is becoming increasingly risky, our project partner SOFIs WORLD has taken on the task of integrating an alternative type of livestock keeping among the Maasai, which should ensure their survival in the long term.

Due to the partial loss of the husbands' sales revenues from herding, as well as the massively increasing food prices, the families there are more threatened than ever by poverty and hunger.

Currently, the situation of pastoralists in Kenya is worse than ever. Recently, large parts of their herds have died of thirst and starvation. Even the mass cattle drive to the distant Kilimanjaro, where water and pasture grass could usually still be found at the river, is currently no longer successful. Even wealthy Masai men report the loss of more than two-thirds of their herds.

Due to these developments, the men are now showing a strong will to use a small part of the herd in stall husbandry also for dairy farming for the families. As part of its biogas plant project for the Maasai women's group "Women of Faith", the NGO SOFIs WORLD was able to install the first biogas plants at four families' homes in May. These serve both to train the direct users and as a showcase for neighbouring families.

By producing biogas, expensive firewood and LPG gas will be saved and cooking can be done in an environmentally and child/people friendly way.

The former pasture land is now used by many women to grow vegetables. Some families are already teaming up and sharing rental costs for a tractor to plough up the solid land. In addition, eight new members of the women's group could also be equipped with photovoltaic systems to generate light.

It is clear that the successful cooperation of the women's group "Women of Faith" with SOFIs WORLD is also convincing the men to listen to their wives and join the overall project.