Solar Cookers for Sudan

Solar Cookers for Sudan

Organization type: 
nonprofit/ngo/citizen sector
$1,000 - $10,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

Solar cookers provide protection for women in the IDP/refugee camps. Instead of scouring the desert for wood and increasing the risk of personal attack and rape the women can stay in the protection of the camp and cook with the sun much of the time. Deforestation is also a major issue address by solar cooking . The lack of rainfall and vegetation has been much of the cause for conflict.

About You
Solar Clutch
Section 1: About You
First Name


Last Name


Section 2: About Your Organization
Is your initiative connected to an established organization?


Organization Name

Solar Clutch

Organization Phone


Organization Address

1331 East Berry Street Fort Wayne, IN 46803

Organization Country
How long has this organization been operating?

1‐5 years

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Your idea
Country your work focuses on
What makes your idea unique?

The idea is not unique but it is not widely understood or believed for that matter. Also, the technology of using materials other than cardboard is unique. The cookers will last 10 times longer if made from polypropylene flute board and mylar surface rather than cardboard and aluminum foil. Other solar cooker designs include local water pot called a borma cooker. Using innovative designs and local material will provide women a source of income as well as protect their lives and conserve their precious cooking fuel. Changing the social fabric of the Sudanese cooking method to include solar cooking will take time but will be the very thing that empowers the women to make a difference in their future. Teaching the children to utilize the energy of the sun is crucial for future ideas to develop in their own communities.

Do you have a patent for this idea?

Tell us about the social impact of your innovation. Please include both numbers and stories as evidence of this impact

The social impact of this is already seen in other countries where it has taken hold. Refugee camp in Iridimi, Chad is showing significant decrease in firewood usage and travel outside the camps. Of the 15,000 refugees there, most families use the solar cooker for at least one meal out of the day. The effort in Sudan has been hampered by the ongoing war in Darfur and the difficulty of working with the Sudanese government. However in El Fashir, Darfur there has been a growing number of women involved in solar cooking. About 50 women have been trained there and many more are interested but due to lack of resources the effort has slowed. Two areas around Khartoum Sudan have been my recent focus -Omdurman and El Hajusif. These two areas of the city of Khartoum are filled with IDPs from South Sudan as well as Darfur. About 70 have been trained in solar cooking and it will take about 3 years to establish a social impact on the society.

Problem: Describe the primary problem(s) that your innovation is addressing

Shortage of charcoal and firewood in the urban areas of Sudan is a major problem. Usually one third of the family income goes to cooking fuel. In Darfur the problem increases to that of rape for the women and girls as they forage miles from the camps in search of wood.

Actions: Describe the steps that you are taking to make your innovation a success. What might prevent that success?

I have been collaborating with a Sudanese run NGO called Darfur Peace and Development Org. to get this innovation into Darfur. I have also worked directly with two Sudanese men who are training women in Khartoum in solar cooking.
Prevention comes in many forms. Lack of funding limits the efforts to just Khartoum. The cost of materials, duty and response of the Sudanese government is also a potential threat. The difficulty of me getting into Sudan regularly is another potential problem. Most big NGO groups are skeptical and are not very innovative in this area.

Results: Describe the expected results of these actions over the next three years. Please address each year separately, if possible

Year one: establish a better visible base of solar cooking in Khartoum that will convince NGO groups and the Sudanese government that this is a viable option
Year two: Start production of good quality local made cookers in Khartoum that will supply the local needs of urban as well as rural
Year three: Mobilize the local universities and schools to promote all kinds appropriate solar energy into their studies and vision

How many people will your project serve annually?


What is the average monthly household income in your target community, in US Dollars?

Less than $50

Does your innovation seek to have an impact on public policy?


If your innovation seeks to impact public policy, how?

I would anticipate the public policy impacted in a way that the leaders' will encourage and motivate the people to start conserving their fossil fuel and replanting trees. When the benefits are seen by the people the policy will be easy to encourage and reinforce.

What stage is your project in?

Operating for 1‐5 years

Does your organization have a board of directors or an advisory board?


Does your organization have a non monetary partnerships with NGOs?


Does your organization have a non monetary partnerships with businesses?


Does your organization have a non monetary partnerships with government?


Please tell us more about how partnerships could be critical to the success of your innovation

Partnerships make the effort a collaboration. Everyone that is involved feels part of the solution. The manufacturing of solar cookers can be done cheaply when people and business donate time and equipment. The organization and implementation of the actual program is extremely difficult without other partnerships. However with partnerships also come bureaucracy that can so clutter the effort that the woman needing this help in Darfur doesn't ever get helped.
Finding the right balance between independence and partnership is crucial and constantly changing. Each partner has an agenda and there has to be good agenda harmony for the partnership to be helpful for this solar cooker effort in Sudan.

We would like to learn more about how your initiative is financially supported. Please explain your business plan/revenue model

This effort is sustained by the compassion and interest of the general public. I advertise and promote the issue of gender violence in Dafur and as people respond and send money we move ahead. Local partnership with businesses and private group have stimulated volunteers to give time, money and resources to make improved cookers and send them to Sudan.

The Story
What was the defining moment that led you to this innovation?

Approximately 250 words left (2000 characters).

Tell us about the person—the social innovator—behind this idea.

Approximately 250 words left (2000 characters).

How did you first hear about Changemakers?

Web Search (e.g., Google or Yahoo)

If through another source, please provide the information
Does your project address any of the following barriers to women’s technology access and use?

If you checked any of the boxes above, please explain how.

Approximately 250 words left (2000 characters).

Does your project involve women in one or more of the following stages of the technology lifecycle? Identification of the problem the technology will solve:

If you checked any of the boxes above, please explain how you will ensure women’s involvement in each relevant phase of the technology lifecycle.

Approximately 250 words left (2000 characters).

If women are a focus of your project, how did this focus evolve?

Which type of women will your project reach directly?

In what ways does your project team/leadership involve women?

Has your organization formed any new partnerships in response to this challenge? If so, with what type/s of organization/s?

Has your project leadership had prior experience with the following?