10897275_1461536993-2708At the start of the day we pick up the supplies for the installation of Onil stoves and then drive to the various communities around Lake Atitlan where they are needed. There are about 18 different pieces: 11 blocks, 3 cement pieces that house the fire box and base for the cooking surface, the wings which are on each side of the stove top for both safety and a warming surface to reheat tortillas, and the chimney. Inside are 8 pieces of terra cotta that make the fire box and about 50 lbs of sand which transfers the heat from the fire evenly across the cooking surface. Anyone who can lift something from 8 lbs to 150 lbs can assist.

13938342_10207006697272037_7351856893299512596_nThe time to install one varies based on how much prep work is necessary as far as leveling the surface where the stove is installed and how difficult it is to anchor the chimney.  Sometimes we have to cut a hole in the roof and then seal the hole around the chimney so water doesn’t leak in. The cost for a stove is $186.00. Please let us know if you have any questions or would like to donate a stove to a Guatemalan family in need. These greatly improve the recipients respiratory health.

Only a few pieces of wood are needed in this type of stove to maintain a cooking fire for the duration of one meal prep.  We witnessed people last year carrying bundles of wood on their backs that were larger than the person carrying them and we were told that the acquisition of firewood was a daily burden because the open fires many women cooked on used so much wood.  Soot residue thickly coats the walls of their homes. It pained me to imagine that the inside of their lungs looked the same.  With this type of stove, the retrieval of firewood is done less frequently, and with the venting of the stovepipe, the harmful toxins do not remain in the house — giving the family more time and greater health!  In fact, these stoves use 70% less wood than a traditional wood stove or open fire. The sand conducts and holds the heat which is part of how they are so efficient!

These photos show the stove installation at various points of progress.

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13912888_10207006701632146_464634305232434893_n13886923_10207006702232161_4964199506971502084_nThe water filter is a series of two buckets.  Water is filled into the top bucket, filtered, and then dispensed from the bottom bucket.  The filter is on the top of the bottom bucket at the end of the hose coming out of the top bucket. The recipient family has to clean this filter ever 3-7 days based on the sediment in the water they are using. It is very simple and they are given the equipment and knowledge to keep it clean. One water filter system costs $121 and it is has an expected life cycle of ten years.  If you would like to donate the funds to provide a family with clean drinking water for ten years, or any part of one, please let us know!  We’d love to be able to deliver and install as many of these as possible.  Clean drinking water keeps kids healthy, and when they are healthy, they are more likely to be able to attend school.