In deforested Northwest Haiti, finding wood to cook one’s daily meal is already a problem. At schools fortunate enough to receive food for cooking school lunches, the school still has to provide the fuel required for cooking. In some places this is an economic hardship because the wood has to be purchased. In other places wood is just difficult to find. At some schools the children have been told that if everyone doesn’t come to school with a piece of firewood or a branch or something that will burn, there won’t be lunch.

ODRINO received three InStove 60 Liter Cooking Systems for use at the Poste Metier School. The school staff assembled the stoves and starting using them without outside assistance or seeing the instructions and put them into operation.

They first reported that the wood necessary to cook for one day was now sufficient for a week. They were pretty excited. Soon after they reported that they were no longer purchasing any wood at all because this new stove technology worked fine with junk wood, twigs, bark, paper or anything that would burn. They were finding enough fuel on the school property.

In a controlled test where the fuel was weighed in a side by side comparison between the InStove60 and cooking with the traditional pot perched on three rock method, the InStove 60 only required 15% of the fuel needed to cook the same quantity of food by the traditional method. On the InStove website they do some projections on the amount of carbon not released into the atmosphere each year for these stoves.

The two ladies who make up the Poste Metier school kitchen staff also reported that the problems of smoke in the school kitchen were eliminated. There is no longer noticeable smoke. The InStove combustion technology causes the wood to fully burn which eliminates smoke. This is a huge blessing to the ladies who cook each day in these kitchens and develop chronic medical conditions caused by high levels of smoke inhalation using the previous cooking method.

ODRINO and InStove are working to get this fuel, carbon, and lifesaving technology into the other school kitchens in the area.