I have been out of touch too long now and so I want to take this opportunity to share snippets of my work here this summer in Nicaragua. One update is that I only intended to stay here for six months, but have since extended my time here for up to three years! The opportunity presented itself and the work is amazing so I decidedto stay and keep working with AsoFénix. The last three months here have jam-packed coordinating interns, groups, biogas digesters and improved cook stoves. Here are some work updates:
In June a group of business students from Portland State University came and worked with AsoFénix. Students toured our hydroelectric, wind, solar, biogas and potable water projects to learn about the work that AsoFénix does. One highlight from the trip was installing solar panels in the community of Poza de la Piedra with the technicians from the neighboring community El Corozo.
After leaving Nicaragua students diligently spent their summer developing business projects for AsoFénix. The focus of the projects is for students utilize their talents to help us become more economically sustainable and to grow economic opportunities in the communities we work in.
This summer our biogas technician, Ronald Torrez has been hard at work repairing biogas digesters, conducting surveys and providing general support to families with the assistance of one of our summer interns, Fiona Dearth. Ronald enjoys working with families and “likes to support families with knowledge and help them learn about caring for their biogas digesters.” Here are some of the pictures of Fiona and Ronald installing new tarps on some of the biogas digesters and working with a family to install a roof to better protect their biogas digester.
Improved Cook Stoves & Oven
My passion for the summer has been improved cook stoves. With Fiona’s help we constructed more improved cook stoves in the community of El Roblar.
I also had the opportunity to build a fuel-efficient oven with Emilia Bello’s family in El Roblar. Based on a design from the Aprovecho Research Center, the entire family helped to build the Winiarski Rocket Oven and to eat all the delicious things Emilia bakes in it.
As fall approaches, Seth and Sarah Hays will be finishing their service after three years of working with AsoFénix. They have contributed so much of their time, energy and ideas over the last years and AsoFénix will be sad to see them depart. However, we are welcoming changes and looking toward the future as we move into a new office, begin the installation of new projects and welcome new interns.