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  • 30 Apr 2020
    As the COVID-19 pandemic wreaks havoc throughout the world, badly hitting both our health systems and economies, it also offers hope. It is lighting a tunnel that could boost the achievement of the African Union's Agenda 2063. The agenda, which is rooted in the ideals of Pan Africanism and is geared towards "an integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa, driven by its citizens," has the African youth at its core. Young entrepreneurs in many African countries are challenged with inadequate support for their startups and are left vulnerable to stiff competition from international brands. In many cases, their businesses fail. Available statistics show that five out of ten enterprises close down in the first five years of operation [1]. Many reasons are behind this crash like poor planning, insufficient marketing, lack of management skills which leads to funding mismanagement, high-interest rate, and poor aftersales services. Consequently, the idea of incubating small enterprises and early-stage business is very crucial. And nowadays across the continent, we have many incubators that offer technical consultancy and some seed funding. These actions will help small startups to stand on their own if supportive legal and regulatory frameworks are put in place. The COVID-19 pandemic has brought sprout up of the African industry. It was the stone that waves the water again and unleashes nationalism idea. In Egypt, for example, a private company designed and manufactured sterilization tunnels locally, and the government bought them [2]. The tunnels will be placed on the hospitals' entrance and exit to disinfect supplies and humans. Figure 1: EGIC Sterilization tunnels The same thing happened in Tunisia, where the government creates a partnership with a local company that manufactures security robotics. The robots were deployed to enforce lockdown restrictions and ensure that the citizens obey the rules. Where people are found to flout the rules, the robot relays their identification to the police for follow-ups and where necessary arrests [3]. Figure 2: Tunisian security robot Also, students at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in Ghana have innovated a low-price ventilator [4]. Why can the Ghanaian government not support them to produce it in larger quantities and supply it to hospitals? Promoting them will also tackle the problem of unemployment, and in so doing, the government gets to kill two birds with the same stone. Even for the portable smart hand wash prototype in Benin [5]. Such a thing is crucial to be put in our crowded vegetable markets, so why not encourage mass production and supply it to the public? These and many others, such as the development of fast and cheaper testing kits as seen in Senegal and Ghana, are but few examples that demonstrate the innovative potentials in Africa. Figure 3: Low price ventilator made in Ghana For a long time now, we here in Africa have overly depended on foreign products, and producing our goods hasn't been a topmost priority for our leaders. But with this pandemic, we have become obliged to manufacture our products, and it will be useful to make it a trend to produce the things that we need. This approach will not just empower the youth but will also help us to reach the Africa We Want. One of Agenda 2063 pillars is the high quality of life for Africans, so how can we achieve it with a high unemployment rate? The agenda aims to transform African economies by building industries and value addition. Perhaps, this is our opportunity to take charge of our development and catch up with developed countries. References [1]https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbesfinancecouncil/2018/10/25/what-percentage-of-small-businesses-fail-and-how-can-you-avoid-being-one-of-them/ [2]https://www.linkedIn/EGIC [3] https://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-52148639 [4]https://newsghana.com.gh/knust-coe-designs-and-construct-ghanas-first-homemade-ventilator/ [5]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IjL3FplLl-c Author Profiles 1. Rana is a MSc. Energy Engineering graduate from PAUWES. 2. Ihemnadia is a MSc. Energy Engineering graduate from PAUWES.
    187 Posted by Rana Mamdouh
  • As the COVID-19 pandemic wreaks havoc throughout the world, badly hitting both our health systems and economies, it also offers hope. It is lighting a tunnel that could boost the achievement of the African Union's Agenda 2063. The agenda, which is rooted in the ideals of Pan Africanism and is geared towards "an integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa, driven by its citizens," has the African youth at its core. Young entrepreneurs in many African countries are challenged with inadequate support for their startups and are left vulnerable to stiff competition from international brands. In many cases, their businesses fail. Available statistics show that five out of ten enterprises close down in the first five years of operation [1]. Many reasons are behind this crash like poor planning, insufficient marketing, lack of management skills which leads to funding mismanagement, high-interest rate, and poor aftersales services. Consequently, the idea of incubating small enterprises and early-stage business is very crucial. And nowadays across the continent, we have many incubators that offer technical consultancy and some seed funding. These actions will help small startups to stand on their own if supportive legal and regulatory frameworks are put in place. The COVID-19 pandemic has brought sprout up of the African industry. It was the stone that waves the water again and unleashes nationalism idea. In Egypt, for example, a private company designed and manufactured sterilization tunnels locally, and the government bought them [2]. The tunnels will be placed on the hospitals' entrance and exit to disinfect supplies and humans. Figure 1: EGIC Sterilization tunnels The same thing happened in Tunisia, where the government creates a partnership with a local company that manufactures security robotics. The robots were deployed to enforce lockdown restrictions and ensure that the citizens obey the rules. Where people are found to flout the rules, the robot relays their identification to the police for follow-ups and where necessary arrests [3]. Figure 2: Tunisian security robot Also, students at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in Ghana have innovated a low-price ventilator [4]. Why can the Ghanaian government not support them to produce it in larger quantities and supply it to hospitals? Promoting them will also tackle the problem of unemployment, and in so doing, the government gets to kill two birds with the same stone. Even for the portable smart hand wash prototype in Benin [5]. Such a thing is crucial to be put in our crowded vegetable markets, so why not encourage mass production and supply it to the public? These and many others, such as the development of fast and cheaper testing kits as seen in Senegal and Ghana, are but few examples that demonstrate the innovative potentials in Africa. Figure 3: Low price ventilator made in Ghana For a long time now, we here in Africa have overly depended on foreign products, and producing our goods hasn't been a topmost priority for our leaders. But with this pandemic, we have become obliged to manufacture our products, and it will be useful to make it a trend to produce the things that we need. This approach will not just empower the youth but will also help us to reach the Africa We Want. One of Agenda 2063 pillars is the high quality of life for Africans, so how can we achieve it with a high unemployment rate? The agenda aims to transform African economies by building industries and value addition. Perhaps, this is our opportunity to take charge of our development and catch up with developed countries. References [1]https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbesfinancecouncil/2018/10/25/what-percentage-of-small-businesses-fail-and-how-can-you-avoid-being-one-of-them/ [2]https://www.linkedIn/EGIC [3] https://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-52148639 [4]https://newsghana.com.gh/knust-coe-designs-and-construct-ghanas-first-homemade-ventilator/ [5]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IjL3FplLl-c Author Profiles 1. Rana is a MSc. Energy Engineering graduate from PAUWES. 2. Ihemnadia is a MSc. Energy Engineering graduate from PAUWES.
    Apr 30, 2020 187
  • 26 Apr 2020
    Why the fight for gender equality must be one and the same for COVID-19 and Climate Change. Published on 26/04/2020  By: Mark Akrofi and Rana Mamdouh       The unprecedented impact of COVID-19 is being felt across the globe. Whiles many governments are mapping out strategies to get their economies back on track, care must be taken to ensure that the plight of vulnerable groups is not worsened by the pandemic. Just like climate change, COVID-19 is affecting everyone in society but it is the world’s poorest and most vulnerable, especially women and girls who will likely suffer the most from its socio-economic impacts [1]. In Africa and many developing parts of the world, women and girls are predominantly responsible for food production, household water and energy (mostly fuelwood) supply for cooking. The presence of climate change has already made these tasks difficult with women spending longer periods in search of water and fuelwood, especially in rural and peri-urban areas. Consequently, their productive hours are reduced and the extended periods spent on doing unpaid care work has further deepened inequalities between women and men.  Photo by 2Photo Pots on Unsplash        The outbreak of COVID-19 has made this situation even worse. In sub-Sarah Africa where 89% of women are employed in the informal sector [2], lockdown measures imposed across countries have resulted in the closure of markets thus, pushing many women out of employment. Confined to their homes and with the closure of schools, women’s unpaid care work, especially for children and the elderly, has increased. This confinement has also brought a spate of heightened domestic violence against women [3]. Stress and anxiety, coupled with restricted movements and isolation due to COVID-19 have already raised serious concerns about people’s mental health. Whiles both men and women are likely to suffer from mental health issues, women may be more susceptible due to the round the clock work that they do in their homes and their exposure to domestic violence.       Today, as countries begin to ease lockdown restrictions with the reopening of some business and the return to normal life is in sight, hope is beginning to return to many who are itching to get back to work and start earning again. However, with schools still closed, this gradual easing of restrictions holds little prospects for reducing gender inequalities (perhaps in the short term) since many women have to stay at home to cater for their children or spend a considerable part of their productive time doing so before going to work. This situation is one that potentially deepens inequalities between women and men. Many government aid packages are targeting small business but what about the thousands of women engaged in informal activities that are not formally registered? COVID-19 may end soon but climate change is far from over. How can women safeguard their health and livelihoods in the face of COVID-19 and climate change? How can we avoid aggravated gender inequalities caused by COVID-19 and climate change?  Photo by Eva Blue on Unsplash       Whiles governments are laying out strategies to get businesses back on track, investment in social safety nets is needed now more than ever to safeguard the livelihoods and well-being of women during and after the pandemic. Governments must recognize that the fight for gender equality is one and the same for both climate change and COVID19. Access to modern energy services during this lockdown period is very crucial whiles equal representation of women in the fight against climate change is as important as equal representation of women in the fight against the pandemic. The United Nations Populations Fund (UNFPA) [4] warns that inadequate representation of women is already evident in some countries’ planning and response to the pandemic.     Governments must also strengthen the activities of NGOs and CSOs who are empowering women, fighting gender-based violence and advocating for gender equality at the grassroots. Such groups need to be empowered to bolster their efforts in creating awareness, reporting incidences of domestic violence, advancing reproductive health rights, and creating supportive networks to help cope with stress during this challenging period. It is imperative that the fight against COVID-19 does not overshadow the fight against climate change. Gender is a cross-cutting issue and it needs to be mainstreamed in all COVID-19 and climate change response efforts in order to avoid a double tragedy of heightened gender inequalities in Africa.   Author Profiles 1. Mark is a MSc. Energy Policy graduate from PAUWES. He is co-founder and former vice president of the PAUWES Climate Change and Gender Club.  Contact Mark 2. Rana is a MSc. Energy Engineering graduate from PAUWES. She is a member of the PAUWES Climate Change and Gender Club. Contact Rana
    584 Posted by Mark M. Akrofi
  • Why the fight for gender equality must be one and the same for COVID-19 and Climate Change. Published on 26/04/2020  By: Mark Akrofi and Rana Mamdouh       The unprecedented impact of COVID-19 is being felt across the globe. Whiles many governments are mapping out strategies to get their economies back on track, care must be taken to ensure that the plight of vulnerable groups is not worsened by the pandemic. Just like climate change, COVID-19 is affecting everyone in society but it is the world’s poorest and most vulnerable, especially women and girls who will likely suffer the most from its socio-economic impacts [1]. In Africa and many developing parts of the world, women and girls are predominantly responsible for food production, household water and energy (mostly fuelwood) supply for cooking. The presence of climate change has already made these tasks difficult with women spending longer periods in search of water and fuelwood, especially in rural and peri-urban areas. Consequently, their productive hours are reduced and the extended periods spent on doing unpaid care work has further deepened inequalities between women and men.  Photo by 2Photo Pots on Unsplash        The outbreak of COVID-19 has made this situation even worse. In sub-Sarah Africa where 89% of women are employed in the informal sector [2], lockdown measures imposed across countries have resulted in the closure of markets thus, pushing many women out of employment. Confined to their homes and with the closure of schools, women’s unpaid care work, especially for children and the elderly, has increased. This confinement has also brought a spate of heightened domestic violence against women [3]. Stress and anxiety, coupled with restricted movements and isolation due to COVID-19 have already raised serious concerns about people’s mental health. Whiles both men and women are likely to suffer from mental health issues, women may be more susceptible due to the round the clock work that they do in their homes and their exposure to domestic violence.       Today, as countries begin to ease lockdown restrictions with the reopening of some business and the return to normal life is in sight, hope is beginning to return to many who are itching to get back to work and start earning again. However, with schools still closed, this gradual easing of restrictions holds little prospects for reducing gender inequalities (perhaps in the short term) since many women have to stay at home to cater for their children or spend a considerable part of their productive time doing so before going to work. This situation is one that potentially deepens inequalities between women and men. Many government aid packages are targeting small business but what about the thousands of women engaged in informal activities that are not formally registered? COVID-19 may end soon but climate change is far from over. How can women safeguard their health and livelihoods in the face of COVID-19 and climate change? How can we avoid aggravated gender inequalities caused by COVID-19 and climate change?  Photo by Eva Blue on Unsplash       Whiles governments are laying out strategies to get businesses back on track, investment in social safety nets is needed now more than ever to safeguard the livelihoods and well-being of women during and after the pandemic. Governments must recognize that the fight for gender equality is one and the same for both climate change and COVID19. Access to modern energy services during this lockdown period is very crucial whiles equal representation of women in the fight against climate change is as important as equal representation of women in the fight against the pandemic. The United Nations Populations Fund (UNFPA) [4] warns that inadequate representation of women is already evident in some countries’ planning and response to the pandemic.     Governments must also strengthen the activities of NGOs and CSOs who are empowering women, fighting gender-based violence and advocating for gender equality at the grassroots. Such groups need to be empowered to bolster their efforts in creating awareness, reporting incidences of domestic violence, advancing reproductive health rights, and creating supportive networks to help cope with stress during this challenging period. It is imperative that the fight against COVID-19 does not overshadow the fight against climate change. Gender is a cross-cutting issue and it needs to be mainstreamed in all COVID-19 and climate change response efforts in order to avoid a double tragedy of heightened gender inequalities in Africa.   Author Profiles 1. Mark is a MSc. Energy Policy graduate from PAUWES. He is co-founder and former vice president of the PAUWES Climate Change and Gender Club.  Contact Mark 2. Rana is a MSc. Energy Engineering graduate from PAUWES. She is a member of the PAUWES Climate Change and Gender Club. Contact Rana
    Apr 26, 2020 584
  • 18 Apr 2020
    In a world where COVID-19 statistics update, from official sites and unfortunately other hoax/fake news via social platforms such as Facebook and WhatsApp spreads it’s generally confusing and at most times overwhelming for most people. COVID-19 has become a daily conversation and a reality impacting all society's aspects and for PAUWES students it’s the University life's experience. The focus being far from their homes, anxiety and worry can easily become the norm. So how are the Pan African Students coping with the official imposed lockdown for the past month, one would wonder? The longing for their homes and a return to the academic routines they had grown accustomed to, has been a shared concern among the students. Strategies to cope with social distancing, self-isolation or quarantine are not readily available in any student manual so creativity and ingenuity has become a necessity for survival. The sixth cohort that comprises a combination of academic giants from the Cape to Cairo hailing from the vast regions of our motherland namely the gold coast of Ghana, the Congo carpeted rain forest, the beautiful Zanzibar island of Tanzania, the Kalahari game reserve of Botswana and the great elegant Minarets of Mansourah, devastation, eagerness with hope for an end to this long isolation and immobility that has incapacitated their lifestyles and put a hold on their academic programs, they have had to rise up with creativity, empathy and sympathy for one another as their twin information and concern for their home countries where their families are and their current temporary home in Algeria, so spreading hope and love for each other has become a necessity for survival .This is an uncertain time for everyone, and with different home countries' news updates combined with Algeria's one may be impacted by fear and anxiety. However the 6th Cohort strives to stand the test of time in this lockdown through pure ingenuity and a shared feeling of being each other's keeper as African brothers and sisters in arms has become a source of unifier and spirit of hope for the Cohort. Students have found means to learn new languages, others have taken up passion to learn the different cultures of their friends, and others have found time to bond with each other while mostly the best friend of each student being either his smartphone or laptop., the lockdown has made students to diversify knowledge through online learning, conversations, among others and from a negative perspective it has made students to cling to their beds as a solace. Creativity with interaction and staying connected during social distancing has led to open engagements and comic satire to pass time and give mental relief from anxiety. In attempts to help regain structure at such a time to academic life, the different clubs have become a source of activity with weekly challenges. These have helped the students find mindful practices and creative pursuits as they work on their weekly assigned tasks. The students come up with initiatives and mind-provoking debates held weekly via their respective club WhatsApp platforms. The Entrepreneurship and Innovation club (PEIC) together with Gender and Climate change club (PGCCC) have embraced technology as the rest of the world has had to under current circumstances as a potential learning and enlightening instrument to keep students engaged and progressive in their pursuits on their various virtual platforms For food provision and supply, besides the residence administration which tries to make the stay for students normal, the host students have also taken up the initiative to lend a hand in providing the other necessities for their colleagues under lockdown thereby minimizing movement in line with residence administration orders. The Cohort WhatsApp platforms have become a place of shared humor and creative puns to pass time as comic relief in times where anxiety and panic attacks among other mental health issues may arise. This has helped most students to build a feeling of community at a time where widespread panic and doom may become overwhelming, for the 6th Cohort they have taken this as a time to find “the needle in the haystack” for tough times call for tough people who can stand in the storm with creativity and focus, and above all spiritual wisdom in arms , the 6th Cohort stands as a family connected through academic purpose and now with shared concerns as an example of the value of 'Ubuntuism' , connected hearts and minds working together with technology on its side and creativity in trying times of COVID-19. Compiled by THE EDITORIAL TEAM 2020
    504 Posted by Roset Namwanje
  • In a world where COVID-19 statistics update, from official sites and unfortunately other hoax/fake news via social platforms such as Facebook and WhatsApp spreads it’s generally confusing and at most times overwhelming for most people. COVID-19 has become a daily conversation and a reality impacting all society's aspects and for PAUWES students it’s the University life's experience. The focus being far from their homes, anxiety and worry can easily become the norm. So how are the Pan African Students coping with the official imposed lockdown for the past month, one would wonder? The longing for their homes and a return to the academic routines they had grown accustomed to, has been a shared concern among the students. Strategies to cope with social distancing, self-isolation or quarantine are not readily available in any student manual so creativity and ingenuity has become a necessity for survival. The sixth cohort that comprises a combination of academic giants from the Cape to Cairo hailing from the vast regions of our motherland namely the gold coast of Ghana, the Congo carpeted rain forest, the beautiful Zanzibar island of Tanzania, the Kalahari game reserve of Botswana and the great elegant Minarets of Mansourah, devastation, eagerness with hope for an end to this long isolation and immobility that has incapacitated their lifestyles and put a hold on their academic programs, they have had to rise up with creativity, empathy and sympathy for one another as their twin information and concern for their home countries where their families are and their current temporary home in Algeria, so spreading hope and love for each other has become a necessity for survival .This is an uncertain time for everyone, and with different home countries' news updates combined with Algeria's one may be impacted by fear and anxiety. However the 6th Cohort strives to stand the test of time in this lockdown through pure ingenuity and a shared feeling of being each other's keeper as African brothers and sisters in arms has become a source of unifier and spirit of hope for the Cohort. Students have found means to learn new languages, others have taken up passion to learn the different cultures of their friends, and others have found time to bond with each other while mostly the best friend of each student being either his smartphone or laptop., the lockdown has made students to diversify knowledge through online learning, conversations, among others and from a negative perspective it has made students to cling to their beds as a solace. Creativity with interaction and staying connected during social distancing has led to open engagements and comic satire to pass time and give mental relief from anxiety. In attempts to help regain structure at such a time to academic life, the different clubs have become a source of activity with weekly challenges. These have helped the students find mindful practices and creative pursuits as they work on their weekly assigned tasks. The students come up with initiatives and mind-provoking debates held weekly via their respective club WhatsApp platforms. The Entrepreneurship and Innovation club (PEIC) together with Gender and Climate change club (PGCCC) have embraced technology as the rest of the world has had to under current circumstances as a potential learning and enlightening instrument to keep students engaged and progressive in their pursuits on their various virtual platforms For food provision and supply, besides the residence administration which tries to make the stay for students normal, the host students have also taken up the initiative to lend a hand in providing the other necessities for their colleagues under lockdown thereby minimizing movement in line with residence administration orders. The Cohort WhatsApp platforms have become a place of shared humor and creative puns to pass time as comic relief in times where anxiety and panic attacks among other mental health issues may arise. This has helped most students to build a feeling of community at a time where widespread panic and doom may become overwhelming, for the 6th Cohort they have taken this as a time to find “the needle in the haystack” for tough times call for tough people who can stand in the storm with creativity and focus, and above all spiritual wisdom in arms , the 6th Cohort stands as a family connected through academic purpose and now with shared concerns as an example of the value of 'Ubuntuism' , connected hearts and minds working together with technology on its side and creativity in trying times of COVID-19. Compiled by THE EDITORIAL TEAM 2020
    Apr 18, 2020 504
  • 15 Oct 2019
    Five students from the Pan African University Institute of Water and Energy Sciences (incl. Climate Change) (PAUWES), Water Track, namely, Claydon Mumba (Water Policy), Oludare Durodola (Water Engineering), Francess Awunor (Water Policy), Margaret Kironde (Water Policy) and Victo Nabunya (Water Engineering), emerged as the best team in Africa and third overall during the 2019 Geneva Challenge. The team presented a project on "Rural Water Filtration Kit" (RUWAFIKI), that seeks to provide water purification solutions for rural livelihoods in Africa using localized materials such as moringa, activated carbon, and filter papers. RUWAFIKI is a water treatment kit that comprises of crushed moringa seeds; saw dust and; filter papers. The kit also consists of other accessories including a funnel, stirring stick, latex gloves, and a user manual with visual instructions on how to use the kit. A proposed design of the kit has been made containing all accessories and dimensions. Their proposal explored the conditions of Makondo Parish in Uganda where they were going to pilot this equipment since the region faced lots of water-borne diseases challenges. They noted that RUWAFIKI was an innovative solution that would enable households in Makondo to filter collected water so as to remove pathogens, improve odor and colour and would thus result in a reduction of the burden of waterborne diseases in the area.The kit is portable, easy to use, and very affordable. The project will be implemented in Makondo in coorporation with various local and international partners. Various performance tools and indicators would be used to monitor and evaluate the performance of the project in Makondo. The project directly contributes to the achivement of the United Nation's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs): No poverty; Good Health and Well-being and; Clean Water. The Geneva challenge is an international competition for graduate students that stimulate reflection and innovation on development from diverse disciplinary and contextual perspectives. This competition was launched in 2014 by the Graduate Institute in Geneva. The Geneva Challenge was supported by the late Kofi Annan and is currently supported by Ambassador Jenö C.A. Staehelin. The idea of this challenge is for graduate students to gather contributions that are both theoretically grounded and offer pragmatic solutions to a relevant international development problem stemming from an interdisciplinary collaboration between three to five enrolled master students from anywhere in the world. The 2019 edition asked graduate students to address the complex issues arising from global health and how to tackle these challenges in order to foster social and economic development.  346 teams composed of 1,364 graduate students from 101 different nationalities registered to take part in the Geneva Challenge 2019. 100 project entries were submitted by 410 students from teams hailing from all over the world, with 16 semi-finalists teams. This year, the external Jury Panel chose five finalist teams, one per continent. Team RUWAFIKI (Rural Water Filtration Kit) was selected as the Best African team and was fully sponsored to defend their project before the Jury on Tuesday, 1st October, 2019 at a public event held at the Graduate Institute Geneva, Switzerland.     You can watch as short video of the team here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=2&v=i7VjvClw3N0
    701 Posted by Brian Oduor
  • Five students from the Pan African University Institute of Water and Energy Sciences (incl. Climate Change) (PAUWES), Water Track, namely, Claydon Mumba (Water Policy), Oludare Durodola (Water Engineering), Francess Awunor (Water Policy), Margaret Kironde (Water Policy) and Victo Nabunya (Water Engineering), emerged as the best team in Africa and third overall during the 2019 Geneva Challenge. The team presented a project on "Rural Water Filtration Kit" (RUWAFIKI), that seeks to provide water purification solutions for rural livelihoods in Africa using localized materials such as moringa, activated carbon, and filter papers. RUWAFIKI is a water treatment kit that comprises of crushed moringa seeds; saw dust and; filter papers. The kit also consists of other accessories including a funnel, stirring stick, latex gloves, and a user manual with visual instructions on how to use the kit. A proposed design of the kit has been made containing all accessories and dimensions. Their proposal explored the conditions of Makondo Parish in Uganda where they were going to pilot this equipment since the region faced lots of water-borne diseases challenges. They noted that RUWAFIKI was an innovative solution that would enable households in Makondo to filter collected water so as to remove pathogens, improve odor and colour and would thus result in a reduction of the burden of waterborne diseases in the area.The kit is portable, easy to use, and very affordable. The project will be implemented in Makondo in coorporation with various local and international partners. Various performance tools and indicators would be used to monitor and evaluate the performance of the project in Makondo. The project directly contributes to the achivement of the United Nation's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs): No poverty; Good Health and Well-being and; Clean Water. The Geneva challenge is an international competition for graduate students that stimulate reflection and innovation on development from diverse disciplinary and contextual perspectives. This competition was launched in 2014 by the Graduate Institute in Geneva. The Geneva Challenge was supported by the late Kofi Annan and is currently supported by Ambassador Jenö C.A. Staehelin. The idea of this challenge is for graduate students to gather contributions that are both theoretically grounded and offer pragmatic solutions to a relevant international development problem stemming from an interdisciplinary collaboration between three to five enrolled master students from anywhere in the world. The 2019 edition asked graduate students to address the complex issues arising from global health and how to tackle these challenges in order to foster social and economic development.  346 teams composed of 1,364 graduate students from 101 different nationalities registered to take part in the Geneva Challenge 2019. 100 project entries were submitted by 410 students from teams hailing from all over the world, with 16 semi-finalists teams. This year, the external Jury Panel chose five finalist teams, one per continent. Team RUWAFIKI (Rural Water Filtration Kit) was selected as the Best African team and was fully sponsored to defend their project before the Jury on Tuesday, 1st October, 2019 at a public event held at the Graduate Institute Geneva, Switzerland.     You can watch as short video of the team here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=2&v=i7VjvClw3N0
    Oct 15, 2019 701
  • 25 Mar 2019
    The tragic Ethiopian Airline, ET-302,  that crushed on Sunday morning of 10th March, 2019, left all the 157 souls lost. Unfortunately, Anne was one of the passengers on board whose life was claimed. Until her demise, she had been enrolled for as an Engineering PhD student at Boku University in Vienna, Austria. Anne Birundi Mogoi was one of the pioneer PAUWES students of the first cohort in the Water Engineering track. She joined PAUWES in 2014 with a Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering from Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT) in Kenya. She was a results-oriented registered Civil Engineer with expertise in Water Resources development projects that focus on Water, Food and Energy Nexus, Sustainable Environment Management, Climate Change, Research, Innovation and Development. Anne was an excellent communicator accustomed to working in teams and individually with a superior eye for detail.She had been involved in the­ design and construction supervision of various water related projects in Kenya and the topographical mapping and planning of Nakuru, Naivasha and Nyeri Counties. Several friends and former PAUWES colleagues sent their tribute messages to mourn her death. Below are some of the tributes: Axel  NGUEDIA NGUEDOUNG from Cameroon  It is so sad to write to express this thought. I did not know that I could ever experience once more such a pain. Definitely, good things never stay for long!!! I find it very difficult to write these words as I did not expect in all scenarios in the past weeks writing words for such occasion. “The Lord has given, the Lord has taken”, but He gave us the opportunity to meet you, to know you, to enjoy the person you have been. We have just spent this small time together, but we’ve shared so much. I have found in you a colleague, a friend, a sister. There is so much to say on you but to keep it short, I will miss your smile, your joy, your fraternal warmth, your ambition and advices as person, sister. I cannot stop seeing picture of you smiling with these unique gestures. You are no more with us physically, but you will remain in our earth forever. I pray that the Almighty Lord welcomes you in his home and let you watch on us while smiling with the Angels up there!!! Go and rest in Peace Dada yangu!!!       Astride Mélaine ADJINACOU GNAHOUI from Cotonou, Benin For you my lovely Anna, May the name of the Lord be glorified. He gave you to us, He called you back. Anna, I just want to tell you that I am so deeply sorry because I didn't use to tell you how much you were hearty and a lovely person for me. Sorry Anne. You entered my life on 23rd of October 2014. We were to start our Master studies in Algeria in Tlemcen. We used to do our assignments together. Thank you for helping me a lot in English. Thank you for always remember my birthday. Thank you for going to church with me together sometimes. Thank you for fighting for our rights in Tlemcen. I remember when on a Thursday, we had an issue together, you came back to see me on Friday and said you were sorry about it. Thank you for being so hearty and forgive me to have not been all the time kind. Thank you for being so caring for me when I was sick in October 2015. You cleaned my room, prepare bathroom for me, checked on me until I recovered. Oh my God! Thank you Anna. My dear Anna, when you laugh, we could hear it from far.   You were so full of joy. I cannot even imagine how you will miss your parents. There is this big whole in my heart. If only I knew that God would call you back to him so early, I would have called you just to hear this laughing of yours. You were so intelligent and enthusiastic. My Anna, I blessed God for your life. You were an Heroine and I think you just go as an Heroine. I can never ever, never ever forget you. I continually pray for, ordering holy Mass for you my Anna, my sister from another mother. Condole yourself your parents and protect them from where you are, now you are even so shinning in the Stars. I believe you are one of the most beautiful of them. Blessings upon your family. I love you my friend. I do. Rest in God's peace my beautiful sister.   Devotha NSHIMIYIMANA  from Rwanda Dear Anne, It broke my heart to lose you but I know that no matter what you will always be with us. Even though your beautiful smile and laughter are gone forever, I will forever cherish your memories. Your constant support, your big heart and incredible personality that always look the best for everyone will forever live in my memories. Oh Anne, you are sadly missed but never forgotten.    Clarisse NIBAGWIRE  NISHIMWE from Rwanda   Ismael Jumare from Nigeria  It is really shocking to have received the sad news of the Ethiopian plane crash, which claimed the life of our beloved sister in the PAUWES family i.e. Anne Mogoi Birundu and other lives. Anne has been a morally sound, friendly and intelligent personality, and a great asset to Africa. So, it is indeed a great loss. I therefore, kindly pass my condolence to the family for the irreplaceable loss. May God comfort you all in your trying moments. Sincerely, Ismail Abubakar Jumare  Kay Nyaboe from Kenya   Lilies Kathambi from Kenya     Nabil KHORCHANI from Tunisia                                                                Nana Safiatu from Bukina Faso  "Verily to Allah, belongs what He took and to Him belongs what He gave". Anne was more than a classmate. Her good heart was abundant of love and empathy for every one of us. A humble sister who always cared and supported me during our years of studies in Tlemcen and even after.  Her personality taught me wisdom, humility and faith. I will always remember Anne’s kindness and that special glowing smile which was contagious with anyone she met. May Allah receive Anne's beautiful soul in Heaven and give her peace and eternal life. Lord, comfort us all bereaved ones, the family and friends, as we go through this huge loss.   Albert Khamala from Kenya  Madam President, as I fondly referred to You at PAUWES, indeed Anne was a great leader with all attributes of an excellent leader. In Anne, I saw Prof. Wangari Mathaai reborn, the love for humanity and natural resources. The world has lost a rare personality with strong heart and mentality. Anne, although gone, your spirit of Pan African Integration will forever live. We love you Anne, bye bye Anne. I will miss your strong heart, contiguous smile and laughter.   Kennedy Okuku from Kenya  We have lost one of the brightest minds in the world. Anne was joyous and always concerned about the issues that affect her colleagues. She knew how to approach a situation without offending either of the party. We will miss you Anne. Rest with the angels.   Sadam Mohammed from Ethiopia  You were a great colleague and your smile face will remain eternally in my memory. Though death is part of every life, it is indeed very painful to hear that you are gone in such tragedy. May the God give your family more strength in this difficult time. RIP Anne     Paul Nduhuura from Uganda  A tribute to a friend and a sister: I met Anne (RIP) for the first time in October 2014 when we both joined PAUWES in Algeria for our master programs as part of the first intake. Though our study programs were different, we attended some common courses together. Moreover, being a part of a small group of pioneer students, we frequently interacted outside the classroom. We dined, talked and laughed a lot together. As a group, we always found a reason to be in each other’s company. Unique to Anne during all this time, was her strong influence on all of us. Whether in class or in social events, Anne always stood out for many reasons, key among them as a natural born leader. Indeed, Anne’s leadership potential did not go unnoticed amongst us her peers. She was chosen as the very first student leader at PAUWES. Throughout the entire first year at PAUWES, I was privileged to serve alongside her as a bridge between the students and the administration. At that time, processes and structures at PAUWES were just starting to evolve. Anne – in her capacity as a student representative – was at the centre of it to advocate for what was best for us, all in a diplomatic and cordial manner. Anne devoted her time, energy and resources, often in long meetings and discussions with the administration and partners, to advance the roots of Pan-Africanism. I dare say that many of the developments that we see today at PAUWES have Anne’s strong footprint in them. PAUWES aside, there’s a lot more that I could say about Anne as a person. I don’t remember any time when I met with her and we parted ways without a hearty laugh. That was Anne’s ‘trademark’. Even during tense and challenging times, her cheerfulness would lighten me up. I will miss her even more for that. Anne also had unmatched intelligence, boldness (she often said, “I don’t mince my words”), an incredibly focused mind and strong sense of belief. Anne knew what she wanted to achieve in life and wouldn’t stop at anything less than her vision. She believed in scaling and exploring the highest heights, casting off stereotypical limitations of race, gender and tradition in the process. This is evident in the fearless decisions that she made and ventures that she undertook. Anne inspired and challenged me in these and many other ways. In her honour and memory, and in as much as I am able, I will challenge myself to advance some of the causes which she believed in. As a friend, the news of Anne’s demise has overwhelmed me so much. Even then, I know that my pain cannot compare to the amount of pain, grief and devastation that you – Anne’s family – have had to endure since you received the terrible news. As you go through this painful period, I would like you to know that, I together with many other friends of Anne in Africa and around the world, are grieving with you. I hope that this tribute can give even the slightest of comfort to you, knowing that you are not alone at this trying moment. As for Anne, she will forever be my friend and sister. I will remember her always. I will miss her. Rest in peace dear Anne. From your son, brother and friend, Paul NDUHUURA   Francis Musyoka from Kenya     Maina Macharia from Kenya  To have met you, interacted with you and shared times together was a great joy and pleasure. You will always be a part of me, fly well Anne, Fly Well to the Almighty.     Osoro George  from Kenya   Faith Natukunda from Uganda Anne, learning of you passing to glory was such a heartbreaking experience. The last news I expected to receive. It brought back various memories of the encounters and good times we had, right from our first meeting at the airport in Istanbul, Turkey on 22nd October 2014; and from that time on, our friendship grew. A beautiful soul, very vibrant and outgoing. A lady of virtue and full of wisdom, that stood her ground no matter the cost. Strove for nothing less than the best, and tolerated no mediocrity. My photo-buddie, you had a laugh would fill a whole room with life, and a smile so contagious. So soon have you departed, but only physically, the memory of you lives on and I continue to hold that so dear. Adieu, mon amie. Rest in eternal peace.   Rehema Maria KHIMULU from Kenya   "On behalf of the PAUWES CoP Team, I would like to offer you and your family our deepest and most sincere condolences, we will surely miss the presence of a truly lovable and kind person. The gorgeous, cheerful and all time shiny smiles, the confident, brilliant and focused person in you will forever be missed. A prayer, a flower, a candle and sad tears of pain for you, our dear sister. May God put you in a special place where you will be watching us, the people who loved and cherished you! No one can prepare you for a loss; it comes like a swift wind. But we take comfort in knowing that you’re now resting with the angels. Words may not suffice to express the heartfelt sorrow that we feel, May your soul rest in eternity." Sincerely,  Brian ODUOR           FARE THEE WELL ANNE!!!                  
    1397 Posted by Brian Oduor
  • The tragic Ethiopian Airline, ET-302,  that crushed on Sunday morning of 10th March, 2019, left all the 157 souls lost. Unfortunately, Anne was one of the passengers on board whose life was claimed. Until her demise, she had been enrolled for as an Engineering PhD student at Boku University in Vienna, Austria. Anne Birundi Mogoi was one of the pioneer PAUWES students of the first cohort in the Water Engineering track. She joined PAUWES in 2014 with a Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering from Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT) in Kenya. She was a results-oriented registered Civil Engineer with expertise in Water Resources development projects that focus on Water, Food and Energy Nexus, Sustainable Environment Management, Climate Change, Research, Innovation and Development. Anne was an excellent communicator accustomed to working in teams and individually with a superior eye for detail.She had been involved in the­ design and construction supervision of various water related projects in Kenya and the topographical mapping and planning of Nakuru, Naivasha and Nyeri Counties. Several friends and former PAUWES colleagues sent their tribute messages to mourn her death. Below are some of the tributes: Axel  NGUEDIA NGUEDOUNG from Cameroon  It is so sad to write to express this thought. I did not know that I could ever experience once more such a pain. Definitely, good things never stay for long!!! I find it very difficult to write these words as I did not expect in all scenarios in the past weeks writing words for such occasion. “The Lord has given, the Lord has taken”, but He gave us the opportunity to meet you, to know you, to enjoy the person you have been. We have just spent this small time together, but we’ve shared so much. I have found in you a colleague, a friend, a sister. There is so much to say on you but to keep it short, I will miss your smile, your joy, your fraternal warmth, your ambition and advices as person, sister. I cannot stop seeing picture of you smiling with these unique gestures. You are no more with us physically, but you will remain in our earth forever. I pray that the Almighty Lord welcomes you in his home and let you watch on us while smiling with the Angels up there!!! Go and rest in Peace Dada yangu!!!       Astride Mélaine ADJINACOU GNAHOUI from Cotonou, Benin For you my lovely Anna, May the name of the Lord be glorified. He gave you to us, He called you back. Anna, I just want to tell you that I am so deeply sorry because I didn't use to tell you how much you were hearty and a lovely person for me. Sorry Anne. You entered my life on 23rd of October 2014. We were to start our Master studies in Algeria in Tlemcen. We used to do our assignments together. Thank you for helping me a lot in English. Thank you for always remember my birthday. Thank you for going to church with me together sometimes. Thank you for fighting for our rights in Tlemcen. I remember when on a Thursday, we had an issue together, you came back to see me on Friday and said you were sorry about it. Thank you for being so hearty and forgive me to have not been all the time kind. Thank you for being so caring for me when I was sick in October 2015. You cleaned my room, prepare bathroom for me, checked on me until I recovered. Oh my God! Thank you Anna. My dear Anna, when you laugh, we could hear it from far.   You were so full of joy. I cannot even imagine how you will miss your parents. There is this big whole in my heart. If only I knew that God would call you back to him so early, I would have called you just to hear this laughing of yours. You were so intelligent and enthusiastic. My Anna, I blessed God for your life. You were an Heroine and I think you just go as an Heroine. I can never ever, never ever forget you. I continually pray for, ordering holy Mass for you my Anna, my sister from another mother. Condole yourself your parents and protect them from where you are, now you are even so shinning in the Stars. I believe you are one of the most beautiful of them. Blessings upon your family. I love you my friend. I do. Rest in God's peace my beautiful sister.   Devotha NSHIMIYIMANA  from Rwanda Dear Anne, It broke my heart to lose you but I know that no matter what you will always be with us. Even though your beautiful smile and laughter are gone forever, I will forever cherish your memories. Your constant support, your big heart and incredible personality that always look the best for everyone will forever live in my memories. Oh Anne, you are sadly missed but never forgotten.    Clarisse NIBAGWIRE  NISHIMWE from Rwanda   Ismael Jumare from Nigeria  It is really shocking to have received the sad news of the Ethiopian plane crash, which claimed the life of our beloved sister in the PAUWES family i.e. Anne Mogoi Birundu and other lives. Anne has been a morally sound, friendly and intelligent personality, and a great asset to Africa. So, it is indeed a great loss. I therefore, kindly pass my condolence to the family for the irreplaceable loss. May God comfort you all in your trying moments. Sincerely, Ismail Abubakar Jumare  Kay Nyaboe from Kenya   Lilies Kathambi from Kenya     Nabil KHORCHANI from Tunisia                                                                Nana Safiatu from Bukina Faso  "Verily to Allah, belongs what He took and to Him belongs what He gave". Anne was more than a classmate. Her good heart was abundant of love and empathy for every one of us. A humble sister who always cared and supported me during our years of studies in Tlemcen and even after.  Her personality taught me wisdom, humility and faith. I will always remember Anne’s kindness and that special glowing smile which was contagious with anyone she met. May Allah receive Anne's beautiful soul in Heaven and give her peace and eternal life. Lord, comfort us all bereaved ones, the family and friends, as we go through this huge loss.   Albert Khamala from Kenya  Madam President, as I fondly referred to You at PAUWES, indeed Anne was a great leader with all attributes of an excellent leader. In Anne, I saw Prof. Wangari Mathaai reborn, the love for humanity and natural resources. The world has lost a rare personality with strong heart and mentality. Anne, although gone, your spirit of Pan African Integration will forever live. We love you Anne, bye bye Anne. I will miss your strong heart, contiguous smile and laughter.   Kennedy Okuku from Kenya  We have lost one of the brightest minds in the world. Anne was joyous and always concerned about the issues that affect her colleagues. She knew how to approach a situation without offending either of the party. We will miss you Anne. Rest with the angels.   Sadam Mohammed from Ethiopia  You were a great colleague and your smile face will remain eternally in my memory. Though death is part of every life, it is indeed very painful to hear that you are gone in such tragedy. May the God give your family more strength in this difficult time. RIP Anne     Paul Nduhuura from Uganda  A tribute to a friend and a sister: I met Anne (RIP) for the first time in October 2014 when we both joined PAUWES in Algeria for our master programs as part of the first intake. Though our study programs were different, we attended some common courses together. Moreover, being a part of a small group of pioneer students, we frequently interacted outside the classroom. We dined, talked and laughed a lot together. As a group, we always found a reason to be in each other’s company. Unique to Anne during all this time, was her strong influence on all of us. Whether in class or in social events, Anne always stood out for many reasons, key among them as a natural born leader. Indeed, Anne’s leadership potential did not go unnoticed amongst us her peers. She was chosen as the very first student leader at PAUWES. Throughout the entire first year at PAUWES, I was privileged to serve alongside her as a bridge between the students and the administration. At that time, processes and structures at PAUWES were just starting to evolve. Anne – in her capacity as a student representative – was at the centre of it to advocate for what was best for us, all in a diplomatic and cordial manner. Anne devoted her time, energy and resources, often in long meetings and discussions with the administration and partners, to advance the roots of Pan-Africanism. I dare say that many of the developments that we see today at PAUWES have Anne’s strong footprint in them. PAUWES aside, there’s a lot more that I could say about Anne as a person. I don’t remember any time when I met with her and we parted ways without a hearty laugh. That was Anne’s ‘trademark’. Even during tense and challenging times, her cheerfulness would lighten me up. I will miss her even more for that. Anne also had unmatched intelligence, boldness (she often said, “I don’t mince my words”), an incredibly focused mind and strong sense of belief. Anne knew what she wanted to achieve in life and wouldn’t stop at anything less than her vision. She believed in scaling and exploring the highest heights, casting off stereotypical limitations of race, gender and tradition in the process. This is evident in the fearless decisions that she made and ventures that she undertook. Anne inspired and challenged me in these and many other ways. In her honour and memory, and in as much as I am able, I will challenge myself to advance some of the causes which she believed in. As a friend, the news of Anne’s demise has overwhelmed me so much. Even then, I know that my pain cannot compare to the amount of pain, grief and devastation that you – Anne’s family – have had to endure since you received the terrible news. As you go through this painful period, I would like you to know that, I together with many other friends of Anne in Africa and around the world, are grieving with you. I hope that this tribute can give even the slightest of comfort to you, knowing that you are not alone at this trying moment. As for Anne, she will forever be my friend and sister. I will remember her always. I will miss her. Rest in peace dear Anne. From your son, brother and friend, Paul NDUHUURA   Francis Musyoka from Kenya     Maina Macharia from Kenya  To have met you, interacted with you and shared times together was a great joy and pleasure. You will always be a part of me, fly well Anne, Fly Well to the Almighty.     Osoro George  from Kenya   Faith Natukunda from Uganda Anne, learning of you passing to glory was such a heartbreaking experience. The last news I expected to receive. It brought back various memories of the encounters and good times we had, right from our first meeting at the airport in Istanbul, Turkey on 22nd October 2014; and from that time on, our friendship grew. A beautiful soul, very vibrant and outgoing. A lady of virtue and full of wisdom, that stood her ground no matter the cost. Strove for nothing less than the best, and tolerated no mediocrity. My photo-buddie, you had a laugh would fill a whole room with life, and a smile so contagious. So soon have you departed, but only physically, the memory of you lives on and I continue to hold that so dear. Adieu, mon amie. Rest in eternal peace.   Rehema Maria KHIMULU from Kenya   "On behalf of the PAUWES CoP Team, I would like to offer you and your family our deepest and most sincere condolences, we will surely miss the presence of a truly lovable and kind person. The gorgeous, cheerful and all time shiny smiles, the confident, brilliant and focused person in you will forever be missed. A prayer, a flower, a candle and sad tears of pain for you, our dear sister. May God put you in a special place where you will be watching us, the people who loved and cherished you! No one can prepare you for a loss; it comes like a swift wind. But we take comfort in knowing that you’re now resting with the angels. Words may not suffice to express the heartfelt sorrow that we feel, May your soul rest in eternity." Sincerely,  Brian ODUOR           FARE THEE WELL ANNE!!!                  
    Mar 25, 2019 1397
  • 09 Mar 2019
    PEIC is a students' club at PAUWES  that enables an environment for students to develop entrepreneurial and innovative mindset to solve real life problems. On 6th March 2019, it held its magniflorious event of transferring the instruments of leadership from the 4th cohort team to the 5th cohort. The magnificent event was graced by powerful speeches from the career service and Entrepreneurship Officer, The Assistant Research coordinator, the outgoing President and the current president. As members of the club, the event was highly honored by Pauwes students. The need for Entrepreneurship and Innovation to solve the current problems like unemployment, poverty, food insecurity among others on the African continent was emphasized. The event was finalised by a mouth-watering lunch  that enabled further interactions between the outgoing and incoming leaders as well as PAUWES staff and club members.
    2232 Posted by Bwambale Joash
  • PEIC is a students' club at PAUWES  that enables an environment for students to develop entrepreneurial and innovative mindset to solve real life problems. On 6th March 2019, it held its magniflorious event of transferring the instruments of leadership from the 4th cohort team to the 5th cohort. The magnificent event was graced by powerful speeches from the career service and Entrepreneurship Officer, The Assistant Research coordinator, the outgoing President and the current president. As members of the club, the event was highly honored by Pauwes students. The need for Entrepreneurship and Innovation to solve the current problems like unemployment, poverty, food insecurity among others on the African continent was emphasized. The event was finalised by a mouth-watering lunch  that enabled further interactions between the outgoing and incoming leaders as well as PAUWES staff and club members.
    Mar 09, 2019 2232
  • 13 Feb 2017
    Every week we go to the market to buy groceries and this past week was no different. We mostly almost know what we are buying because frankly the choices are quite limited. One of my favourite things to do is picking cauliflower because of its colour and the contrast it gives in the sea of green and red vegetables. However, I could not make up my mind this week. The cauliflowers looked unhealthy and they had started yellowing and none appealed to me. I remember standing there and not wanting to make a choice and Diana insisting that her hands were full (how this related to making a choice is beyond me but I digress) and I needed to make up my mind. I did finally make a choice of 2 but I was not pleased with what we took home. I am almost sure other customers experienced my dilemma because according to a research done by Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) food at the retail level is mostly bought because it looks good. That which does not appeal to the customers is left to rot or pulled off the shelves. It is no wonder then that a third of the food produced in the world goes to waste post harvest translating to 1.3 billion tons of food every year (FAO, 2011). A quarter of this wasted food could be used to feed approximately 900 million of the world hungry. This wastefulness does not begin at the retail or consumer level but starts with the farmer sorting, storing and transporting their produce. Research shows that farmers in developing countries lose as much as 15% of their income to post-harvest loss. The impact extends to water resources with around 25% of global fresh water and a fifth of farm land being used to grow crops that are never eaten.  These figures are staggering considering most of these wastage can be easily corrected through attitude and behavior change. Another solution lies in governments providing a suitable environment for innovations on ways to conserve food for longer periods and regulating market standards. Every time I have been to the market I have always noticed vegetables going bad and by now Diana considers my voiced concern as a rhetorical question. Unfortunately, this is not an issue that is unique to Algeria but something I have witnessed in the different countries I have visited as I am sure most of you would attest. It always baffles me that so much food goes to waste and is pulled down the shelves for disposal while we have so many people starving in our societies. France however is working towards changing this status quo through the introduction of legislation that requires retailers to donate unsold food or face a fine of 4,230 dollars. Other European countries like Germany, Britain and Denmark have also made strides in the reduction of food wastage. In Cologne for instance a “waste supermarket” was opened at the beginning of the month where only salvaged food is sold and consumers determine the price of the products. The owner of the store in an interview with DW confessed her aim was not so much as her selling food that would otherwise be considered waste but to stimulate a conversation on how much food the Germans waste and promote behavior change. On the other side of the globe the Kenyan president declared drought as a national disaster with the Kenya Red Cross estimating that 2.7 million people are facing starvation. It saddens me that we continue to lose lives and livestock because we cannot feed our population. The  more I think about it the more I become disgusted at our society that is so profit driven that you would rather have produce rot at the shelves or farms than donate it to the needy and at our government for failing to act in a timely manner. If we are to achieve the sustainable development goal 2 on Zero hunger by 2030 we not only need to promote sustainable agricultural practices but consumption habits as well. The governments need to come up with penalties to discourage retail wastage and drive awareness campaigns to change the way consumers view food and the consequences of food wastage for the rest of the population and the ecosystem.   Useful Links http://www.fao.org/docrep/014/mb060e/mb060e.pdf http://www.dw.com/en/france-battles-food-waste-by-law/a-19148931 http://www.dw.com/en/first-german-supermarket-sells-waste-food-only/a-37426777
    2252 Posted by Eva Kimonye
  • Every week we go to the market to buy groceries and this past week was no different. We mostly almost know what we are buying because frankly the choices are quite limited. One of my favourite things to do is picking cauliflower because of its colour and the contrast it gives in the sea of green and red vegetables. However, I could not make up my mind this week. The cauliflowers looked unhealthy and they had started yellowing and none appealed to me. I remember standing there and not wanting to make a choice and Diana insisting that her hands were full (how this related to making a choice is beyond me but I digress) and I needed to make up my mind. I did finally make a choice of 2 but I was not pleased with what we took home. I am almost sure other customers experienced my dilemma because according to a research done by Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) food at the retail level is mostly bought because it looks good. That which does not appeal to the customers is left to rot or pulled off the shelves. It is no wonder then that a third of the food produced in the world goes to waste post harvest translating to 1.3 billion tons of food every year (FAO, 2011). A quarter of this wasted food could be used to feed approximately 900 million of the world hungry. This wastefulness does not begin at the retail or consumer level but starts with the farmer sorting, storing and transporting their produce. Research shows that farmers in developing countries lose as much as 15% of their income to post-harvest loss. The impact extends to water resources with around 25% of global fresh water and a fifth of farm land being used to grow crops that are never eaten.  These figures are staggering considering most of these wastage can be easily corrected through attitude and behavior change. Another solution lies in governments providing a suitable environment for innovations on ways to conserve food for longer periods and regulating market standards. Every time I have been to the market I have always noticed vegetables going bad and by now Diana considers my voiced concern as a rhetorical question. Unfortunately, this is not an issue that is unique to Algeria but something I have witnessed in the different countries I have visited as I am sure most of you would attest. It always baffles me that so much food goes to waste and is pulled down the shelves for disposal while we have so many people starving in our societies. France however is working towards changing this status quo through the introduction of legislation that requires retailers to donate unsold food or face a fine of 4,230 dollars. Other European countries like Germany, Britain and Denmark have also made strides in the reduction of food wastage. In Cologne for instance a “waste supermarket” was opened at the beginning of the month where only salvaged food is sold and consumers determine the price of the products. The owner of the store in an interview with DW confessed her aim was not so much as her selling food that would otherwise be considered waste but to stimulate a conversation on how much food the Germans waste and promote behavior change. On the other side of the globe the Kenyan president declared drought as a national disaster with the Kenya Red Cross estimating that 2.7 million people are facing starvation. It saddens me that we continue to lose lives and livestock because we cannot feed our population. The  more I think about it the more I become disgusted at our society that is so profit driven that you would rather have produce rot at the shelves or farms than donate it to the needy and at our government for failing to act in a timely manner. If we are to achieve the sustainable development goal 2 on Zero hunger by 2030 we not only need to promote sustainable agricultural practices but consumption habits as well. The governments need to come up with penalties to discourage retail wastage and drive awareness campaigns to change the way consumers view food and the consequences of food wastage for the rest of the population and the ecosystem.   Useful Links http://www.fao.org/docrep/014/mb060e/mb060e.pdf http://www.dw.com/en/france-battles-food-waste-by-law/a-19148931 http://www.dw.com/en/first-german-supermarket-sells-waste-food-only/a-37426777
    Feb 13, 2017 2252
  • 09 Mar 2019
    PEIC is a students' club at PAUWES  that enables an environment for students to develop entrepreneurial and innovative mindset to solve real life problems. On 6th March 2019, it held its magniflorious event of transferring the instruments of leadership from the 4th cohort team to the 5th cohort. The magnificent event was graced by powerful speeches from the career service and Entrepreneurship Officer, The Assistant Research coordinator, the outgoing President and the current president. As members of the club, the event was highly honored by Pauwes students. The need for Entrepreneurship and Innovation to solve the current problems like unemployment, poverty, food insecurity among others on the African continent was emphasized. The event was finalised by a mouth-watering lunch  that enabled further interactions between the outgoing and incoming leaders as well as PAUWES staff and club members.
    2232 Posted by Bwambale Joash
  • PEIC is a students' club at PAUWES  that enables an environment for students to develop entrepreneurial and innovative mindset to solve real life problems. On 6th March 2019, it held its magniflorious event of transferring the instruments of leadership from the 4th cohort team to the 5th cohort. The magnificent event was graced by powerful speeches from the career service and Entrepreneurship Officer, The Assistant Research coordinator, the outgoing President and the current president. As members of the club, the event was highly honored by Pauwes students. The need for Entrepreneurship and Innovation to solve the current problems like unemployment, poverty, food insecurity among others on the African continent was emphasized. The event was finalised by a mouth-watering lunch  that enabled further interactions between the outgoing and incoming leaders as well as PAUWES staff and club members.
    Mar 09, 2019 2232
  • 04 Apr 2016
    A question was recently posed to all of us, how did we come to hear about PAUWES and what are we planning to do after graduation next year. As you can imagine the answers were as valid as the number we are. I believe that when we all received the email offering us a place at the institute we weighed our options before committing to accept the offer. I was working for an engineering firm before I joined PAUWES and as much as I loved my line of work in the environmental and social field I was ready for change and here I am. Months later I am glad I made that decision because I have seen my areas of interest take shape in ways I never imagined before. I can clearly see myself working with communities in empowering women and men in adapting and mitigating impacts of climate change which will only come from creation of awareness and capacity building and involvement of all stakeholders in policy formulation in regards to resource use and exploitation.   I am not here to patronize anyone. We all had different expectations when we said yes to that offer back in July last year and I will be the first to admit that some of my expectations have not been met but others have been met beyond what was offered. One of the things I can credit the institute for is the creation of networking opportunities for all students. In March this year we had a symposium on renewable energy that saw researchers from Africa and Europe come together and spend almost a week in Tlemcen. The icing on the cake is all of us were in one way or another involved in the planning and coordinating the symposium activities. Fast forward in late March and we travelled to Germany where we were not only able to interact with experts in our relevant fields but with students who have been successful in doing research and for some coming up with new inventions. The willingness for them to help or refer us to someone who could offer a better perspective was humbling and appreciated.   So where am I going with all of this? I have heard the question time and again about where our fate lies once we graduate next year. I recognize that the uncertain future is a cause for worry for some of us and I know the job market is very competitive and sometimes all you need is someone to give you a push or put in a good word for you. What I do not agree with is our approach to the above. We cannot continue to complain about the opportunities that are not available while we are not using the ones provided. I want to pose a question to all of us, how many of us approached the professors and students during the symposium and in Germany seeking to create new networks and connections? How many of us approached someone and they said no to your request without giving you an alternative? Some may argue that not all of us are able to approach new people and strike a conversation but we also have to be willing to step into unfamiliar waters and take risks. It is nerve wrecking for the first time but I promise it gets easier.   When we signed the contract no one promised to offer us a job after graduation, I doubt any scholarship program promises that anywhere else in the world. What we have instead is a safe environment to connect and interact with experts from different fields and a chance to build our confidence level without the pressure of getting it right the first time. I look at networking as a reward point system, where every connection made is a point gained and you can redeem later on in life. We have the Community of Practice (CoP) that allows follow up and chances to show case our abilities outside the classroom environment as individuals or in our respective groups. Soon enough different companies data base will be uploaded and new opportunities will arise. More professors and experts will join and the community will grow. You have the liberty to invite someone to CoP if you feel that their expertise could be of help to you as an individual or others. If you identify a connection worth exploring and you have no idea how to approach them you can ask for help, there is always someone willing to give a hand. The possibilities are endless but we have to make that first step or we will never realize how many people are willing to walk with us. What saddens me is that we have not realized the opportunities provided to us or have not been willing to invest time to exploit them fully. We have not taken time to upload our resume or at the very least a profile picture or write to a new connection and clearly articulate our areas of interest and the kind of push we need. In my opinion the field is set and we only have to be willing to play in it. It would be sad if after two years we looked back at our time here with regret, 24 months is way too much time to spend pointing out what has not been given to you. If you think life gave you lemons the minute you stepped in PAUWES please make some lemonade summer is coming!
    1796 Posted by Eva Kimonye
  • A question was recently posed to all of us, how did we come to hear about PAUWES and what are we planning to do after graduation next year. As you can imagine the answers were as valid as the number we are. I believe that when we all received the email offering us a place at the institute we weighed our options before committing to accept the offer. I was working for an engineering firm before I joined PAUWES and as much as I loved my line of work in the environmental and social field I was ready for change and here I am. Months later I am glad I made that decision because I have seen my areas of interest take shape in ways I never imagined before. I can clearly see myself working with communities in empowering women and men in adapting and mitigating impacts of climate change which will only come from creation of awareness and capacity building and involvement of all stakeholders in policy formulation in regards to resource use and exploitation.   I am not here to patronize anyone. We all had different expectations when we said yes to that offer back in July last year and I will be the first to admit that some of my expectations have not been met but others have been met beyond what was offered. One of the things I can credit the institute for is the creation of networking opportunities for all students. In March this year we had a symposium on renewable energy that saw researchers from Africa and Europe come together and spend almost a week in Tlemcen. The icing on the cake is all of us were in one way or another involved in the planning and coordinating the symposium activities. Fast forward in late March and we travelled to Germany where we were not only able to interact with experts in our relevant fields but with students who have been successful in doing research and for some coming up with new inventions. The willingness for them to help or refer us to someone who could offer a better perspective was humbling and appreciated.   So where am I going with all of this? I have heard the question time and again about where our fate lies once we graduate next year. I recognize that the uncertain future is a cause for worry for some of us and I know the job market is very competitive and sometimes all you need is someone to give you a push or put in a good word for you. What I do not agree with is our approach to the above. We cannot continue to complain about the opportunities that are not available while we are not using the ones provided. I want to pose a question to all of us, how many of us approached the professors and students during the symposium and in Germany seeking to create new networks and connections? How many of us approached someone and they said no to your request without giving you an alternative? Some may argue that not all of us are able to approach new people and strike a conversation but we also have to be willing to step into unfamiliar waters and take risks. It is nerve wrecking for the first time but I promise it gets easier.   When we signed the contract no one promised to offer us a job after graduation, I doubt any scholarship program promises that anywhere else in the world. What we have instead is a safe environment to connect and interact with experts from different fields and a chance to build our confidence level without the pressure of getting it right the first time. I look at networking as a reward point system, where every connection made is a point gained and you can redeem later on in life. We have the Community of Practice (CoP) that allows follow up and chances to show case our abilities outside the classroom environment as individuals or in our respective groups. Soon enough different companies data base will be uploaded and new opportunities will arise. More professors and experts will join and the community will grow. You have the liberty to invite someone to CoP if you feel that their expertise could be of help to you as an individual or others. If you identify a connection worth exploring and you have no idea how to approach them you can ask for help, there is always someone willing to give a hand. The possibilities are endless but we have to make that first step or we will never realize how many people are willing to walk with us. What saddens me is that we have not realized the opportunities provided to us or have not been willing to invest time to exploit them fully. We have not taken time to upload our resume or at the very least a profile picture or write to a new connection and clearly articulate our areas of interest and the kind of push we need. In my opinion the field is set and we only have to be willing to play in it. It would be sad if after two years we looked back at our time here with regret, 24 months is way too much time to spend pointing out what has not been given to you. If you think life gave you lemons the minute you stepped in PAUWES please make some lemonade summer is coming!
    Apr 04, 2016 1796
  • 08 Mar 2016
    I wonder when ethnic groups realized they were different, not because of their culture or practices but because of the color of their skin. When did skin color become more important than the blood that flows in our veins and when did the inner spirit that truly defines a person become second class? The emergence of the word race dates back to 17th century and is mostly used to categorize people primarily by their physical differences. I wonder who coined the word. I can imagine them sitting down in a dark room, smoking their pipes and sipping their fine scotch as they decided that the color of the skin, hair texture and facial features defined a man and his superiority. They must have had a water tight strategy because the propaganda spread like wildfire. It is no wonder the cosmetics industry has capitalized on this; there are countless lightening products in the market today and the buyers are not lacking. Think of all man has done, found cure to deadly diseases, travelled out of space, survived wars and natural disasters and yet he is unable to reconcile himself to the fact that he is one species; the human race. Not white, yellow, red, black, brown or whatever other classification you want to use. He is one species and we are all members of it I trust we have all watched or read the news on racial hate attacks or profiling. I used to think it cannot be that bad. The victims could rise beyond the hate, develop a hard skin and move on. After all, sticks and stones can break your bones but words cannot hurt you. Oh how terribly wrong I was, because when I came to be on the receiving end of the racial slur all I wanted to do was to crawl in a hole and hide. I wondered how someone could look at me and see an inferior being, a la couleur or even worse use the N word. I dreaded going out because it felt like I was walking into a lion’s den, I could feel the stares, feel them get ready to pounce as I walked on the streets and as if not ones to disappoint the shouts and crude remarks would start. I cannot tell you how many times I felt defiled or like a lesser human being.   I remember calling my best friend and bemoaning of how miserable and lonely I felt and I will never forget the words she said to me because they redefined my outlook on life here. She told me it would be a shame to live in a new country for two years and not know a soul. Hate is everywhere she argued but taking the victim role did not make me the better person. I had to reach out and open my heart to the new environment and the people. I thought she was crazy but I gave it a try and I have found acceptance for who I am and that somehow drowns the hate.   I will admit that I have gotten better at ignoring the shouts and the crude remarks. Maybe I have developed a thicker skin or I have come to the acceptance that every society has its rotten eggs. There are times I want to shout at the top of my voice or hit something or someone but that would only reinforce their belief that I am crazy plus I do not want to break my hand. So I ignore every word and go my way as if it doesn’t matter. But I still have questions, what resides in a heart that spews such venom or don’t they know it hurts? I am human too, I hurt and I crave for acceptance regardless of my skin color or my kinky hair. I bleed red, I breath oxygenand I am vulnerable with a heart that breaks just as easily. Yet in all these hate, I have found hope in the welcoming faces of total strangers and formed new friendships and I have learnt to never apologize for who I am because there can never be a more beautiful me.  
    1780 Posted by Eva Kimonye
  • I wonder when ethnic groups realized they were different, not because of their culture or practices but because of the color of their skin. When did skin color become more important than the blood that flows in our veins and when did the inner spirit that truly defines a person become second class? The emergence of the word race dates back to 17th century and is mostly used to categorize people primarily by their physical differences. I wonder who coined the word. I can imagine them sitting down in a dark room, smoking their pipes and sipping their fine scotch as they decided that the color of the skin, hair texture and facial features defined a man and his superiority. They must have had a water tight strategy because the propaganda spread like wildfire. It is no wonder the cosmetics industry has capitalized on this; there are countless lightening products in the market today and the buyers are not lacking. Think of all man has done, found cure to deadly diseases, travelled out of space, survived wars and natural disasters and yet he is unable to reconcile himself to the fact that he is one species; the human race. Not white, yellow, red, black, brown or whatever other classification you want to use. He is one species and we are all members of it I trust we have all watched or read the news on racial hate attacks or profiling. I used to think it cannot be that bad. The victims could rise beyond the hate, develop a hard skin and move on. After all, sticks and stones can break your bones but words cannot hurt you. Oh how terribly wrong I was, because when I came to be on the receiving end of the racial slur all I wanted to do was to crawl in a hole and hide. I wondered how someone could look at me and see an inferior being, a la couleur or even worse use the N word. I dreaded going out because it felt like I was walking into a lion’s den, I could feel the stares, feel them get ready to pounce as I walked on the streets and as if not ones to disappoint the shouts and crude remarks would start. I cannot tell you how many times I felt defiled or like a lesser human being.   I remember calling my best friend and bemoaning of how miserable and lonely I felt and I will never forget the words she said to me because they redefined my outlook on life here. She told me it would be a shame to live in a new country for two years and not know a soul. Hate is everywhere she argued but taking the victim role did not make me the better person. I had to reach out and open my heart to the new environment and the people. I thought she was crazy but I gave it a try and I have found acceptance for who I am and that somehow drowns the hate.   I will admit that I have gotten better at ignoring the shouts and the crude remarks. Maybe I have developed a thicker skin or I have come to the acceptance that every society has its rotten eggs. There are times I want to shout at the top of my voice or hit something or someone but that would only reinforce their belief that I am crazy plus I do not want to break my hand. So I ignore every word and go my way as if it doesn’t matter. But I still have questions, what resides in a heart that spews such venom or don’t they know it hurts? I am human too, I hurt and I crave for acceptance regardless of my skin color or my kinky hair. I bleed red, I breath oxygenand I am vulnerable with a heart that breaks just as easily. Yet in all these hate, I have found hope in the welcoming faces of total strangers and formed new friendships and I have learnt to never apologize for who I am because there can never be a more beautiful me.  
    Mar 08, 2016 1780
  • 20 Jan 2016
    Morocco establishes international tender for large-scale solar power project ESI Africa – 15 January 2016 – Click here for full article In North Africa, the Moroccan Agency for Solar Energy has established a new international tender for a large-scale solar power project with a total installed capacity of 400MW. The solar power project will include systems based on solar PV and solar thermal power generation technology, according to The North Africa Post.   L’Algérie et l’Inde veulent développer la coopération énergétique L’Econews – 14 January 2016 – Click here for full article Le ministre de l'Energie, Salah Khebri, a reçu jeudi, l'ambassadeur de l'Inde en Algérie, Kuldeep Singh Bhardwaj, avec qui, il a discuté des opportunités de coopération dans le domaine de l'énergie, indique un communiqué du ministère.   World Bank endorses financial aid for Liberian energy projects ESI Africa – 13 January 2016 – Click here for full article On Monday, the World Bank announced that it has endorsed a new funding contract that is worth a total of $27 million, which will be aimed at fast-tracking access to affordable and reliable electricity in Liberia   Les énergies renouvelables en Afrique ne sont pas une utopie Le Monde – 13 January 2016 – Click here for full article Face aux enjeux économiques, sociaux et environnementaux que présente la situation énergétique du continent africain, il est temps de développer un modèle fondé sur la compétitivité des énergies renouvelables et la participation financière des capitaux locaux. L’Afrique est à la veille d’un bond technologique dans les énergies comme elle en a connu un dans les télécoms   African Sunshine Can Now Be Bought and Sold on the Bond Market Bloomberg – 12 January 2016 – Click here for full article Africa’s off-grid solar industry has been turned into an asset class for the first time, bundling contracts for thousands of the sun-powered rooftop electricity systems to sell as bonds. Dutch investor Oikocredit International and Persistent Energy Capital LLC, a New York-based merchant bank, jointly decided to try to replicate the U.S. model of securitizing residential solar panels. They are working with the London-based developer BBOXX Ltd.   Formation de techniciens en énergie solaire photovoltaïque Afriquejet – 12 January 2016 – Click here for full article Éclairer l’Afrique à partir de l’énergie solaire photovoltaïque - A partir du 16 janvier 2016, Bamako abritera une académie de formation de techniciens en énergie solaire. Cette formation s'adressera à des étudiants ayant un profil d’entrepreneur, d’acteur du domaine de l'énergie solaire ou de décideur politique de l’orientation énergétique dans leurs pays respectifs.
    1594 Posted by David Paulus
  • Morocco establishes international tender for large-scale solar power project ESI Africa – 15 January 2016 – Click here for full article In North Africa, the Moroccan Agency for Solar Energy has established a new international tender for a large-scale solar power project with a total installed capacity of 400MW. The solar power project will include systems based on solar PV and solar thermal power generation technology, according to The North Africa Post.   L’Algérie et l’Inde veulent développer la coopération énergétique L’Econews – 14 January 2016 – Click here for full article Le ministre de l'Energie, Salah Khebri, a reçu jeudi, l'ambassadeur de l'Inde en Algérie, Kuldeep Singh Bhardwaj, avec qui, il a discuté des opportunités de coopération dans le domaine de l'énergie, indique un communiqué du ministère.   World Bank endorses financial aid for Liberian energy projects ESI Africa – 13 January 2016 – Click here for full article On Monday, the World Bank announced that it has endorsed a new funding contract that is worth a total of $27 million, which will be aimed at fast-tracking access to affordable and reliable electricity in Liberia   Les énergies renouvelables en Afrique ne sont pas une utopie Le Monde – 13 January 2016 – Click here for full article Face aux enjeux économiques, sociaux et environnementaux que présente la situation énergétique du continent africain, il est temps de développer un modèle fondé sur la compétitivité des énergies renouvelables et la participation financière des capitaux locaux. L’Afrique est à la veille d’un bond technologique dans les énergies comme elle en a connu un dans les télécoms   African Sunshine Can Now Be Bought and Sold on the Bond Market Bloomberg – 12 January 2016 – Click here for full article Africa’s off-grid solar industry has been turned into an asset class for the first time, bundling contracts for thousands of the sun-powered rooftop electricity systems to sell as bonds. Dutch investor Oikocredit International and Persistent Energy Capital LLC, a New York-based merchant bank, jointly decided to try to replicate the U.S. model of securitizing residential solar panels. They are working with the London-based developer BBOXX Ltd.   Formation de techniciens en énergie solaire photovoltaïque Afriquejet – 12 January 2016 – Click here for full article Éclairer l’Afrique à partir de l’énergie solaire photovoltaïque - A partir du 16 janvier 2016, Bamako abritera une académie de formation de techniciens en énergie solaire. Cette formation s'adressera à des étudiants ayant un profil d’entrepreneur, d’acteur du domaine de l'énergie solaire ou de décideur politique de l’orientation énergétique dans leurs pays respectifs.
    Jan 20, 2016 1594
  • 02 May 2016
    I am a lover of elephants and I have been lucky enough to watch them in their natural habitat. They are the most majestic animals I have ever come across and the sheer size of an adult bull or cow always leaves me in wonder. Their sense of family and interaction is an honor to watch.  There are two species of elephant; African elephant weighing up to 6, 000kg and its Asian counterpart weighing at around 5,000kg. Every elephant herd is led by a matriarch which is the oldest female in the herd (it’s a female world out there). Her role is to offer guidance to the heard and teach the young ones how to behave. So intelligent are they that they extend their trunks in greetings when they meet each other and are known to perform funeral rituals for their dead. Let me assure you that I am not here to bore you with facts about elephants but to bring to your attention the threat that faces these gentle giants.   On 30th April 2016 Kenya burnt over 100 tones of ivory stock piles which is a representation of about 8,000 elephants that have been lost to poaching in the recent years. This ivory was not only confiscated from poachers in Kenya but from traffickers using Kenyan airports and ports to export the illegal goods. According to the African Wildlife Foundation there are around 470,000 African elephants roaming the wild. Some of us may think that this is a huge number but the picture on the ground is more tragic. Every 15 minutes an African elephant is killed by poachers for its tusks. That means that if this trend continues the elephants will be extinct in the next two decades. Boom! Gone!   The historical burn of over 100 tones of ivory at Nairobi National Park Most of you might argue that we live in a world where it is survival for the fittest and Charles Darwin would definitely back up your argument. However, this is not nature taking its course but human greed fuelling massive killings. The largest markets for ivory products are China and the United States. What disgusts me the most is that it is the elite that are buying the ivory trinkets and carvings to cement their standing in society. The icing on this madness is their belief that the trinkets or carvings are good luck charms, an aphrodisiac (really?) and are a sign of wealth. How low the human race has sunk is beyond my comprehension. The cycle of ivory trade is one of pain and loss of lives. Park rangers are killed daily in the line of duty and war lords like Joseph Kony from Uganda sell ivory to buy arms and continue reigning terror among the innocents. Do not get me started on the crimes his army has committed against women and children as he seeks to quench his power hungry soul.   That is why the action of Kenya to burn over 100 tones of ivory is very significant. It sends a message that Kenya will not tolerate illegal trade in wildlife. It is a cry to the world to pay attention before elephants and rhinos become a tale like the dinosaurs. Many people especially in Kenya have been of the opinion that the ivory should have been sold at an estimation of 172 million USD and the money used for conservation efforts. I choose to disagree; great strides have been made in banning ivory trade in some states in America and parts of China. Releasing such amount of ivory to the market will only refuel the trade and result to more poaching. On the other hand guarding ivory stock piles is an expensive affair and would require 24/7 surveillance. The danger with this is that we have some rotten corrupt individuals who would not blink an eye when sneaking the ivory to the black market. So what better way to stick it up their faces other than burning the stock piles to ashes! We are simply saying elephants are worth more alive, let me explain;   Tourism in Kenya is the second largest source of foreign exchange revenue following agriculture. The $1 billion a year industry is a source of livelihood for thousands of Kenyans while our South African counterparts earn more than $ 7 billion every year accounting for around 7.9% of its GDP. I could go on and on about the benefits we derive as a continent from live animals than dead. I recognize that this problem is not only unique to Africa but conservationists around the world are racing against time to save other endangered species like the white rhino, sea turtles, jaguar, panda, white sharks among many others. What has gotten us here is human greed. It is the lack of respect for any other creature that walks on the face of the earth. We have forgotten that man may be supposedly the most intelligent on the web but every species has a role to play in the functioning of the food web.   We are destroying our planet at an unprecedented rate. We have cleared forests to build cities and expand our suburban neighborhoods, we have polluted the same rivers that give us life and turned our ears deaf to the conservationists’ voices of reason among us. History however, will judge us. Generations to come will hold us responsible for not protecting that which was entrusted to us. We owe it to them therefore, to be stewards of this beautiful planet until we can pass the torch to them.
    1419 Posted by Eva Kimonye
  • I am a lover of elephants and I have been lucky enough to watch them in their natural habitat. They are the most majestic animals I have ever come across and the sheer size of an adult bull or cow always leaves me in wonder. Their sense of family and interaction is an honor to watch.  There are two species of elephant; African elephant weighing up to 6, 000kg and its Asian counterpart weighing at around 5,000kg. Every elephant herd is led by a matriarch which is the oldest female in the herd (it’s a female world out there). Her role is to offer guidance to the heard and teach the young ones how to behave. So intelligent are they that they extend their trunks in greetings when they meet each other and are known to perform funeral rituals for their dead. Let me assure you that I am not here to bore you with facts about elephants but to bring to your attention the threat that faces these gentle giants.   On 30th April 2016 Kenya burnt over 100 tones of ivory stock piles which is a representation of about 8,000 elephants that have been lost to poaching in the recent years. This ivory was not only confiscated from poachers in Kenya but from traffickers using Kenyan airports and ports to export the illegal goods. According to the African Wildlife Foundation there are around 470,000 African elephants roaming the wild. Some of us may think that this is a huge number but the picture on the ground is more tragic. Every 15 minutes an African elephant is killed by poachers for its tusks. That means that if this trend continues the elephants will be extinct in the next two decades. Boom! Gone!   The historical burn of over 100 tones of ivory at Nairobi National Park Most of you might argue that we live in a world where it is survival for the fittest and Charles Darwin would definitely back up your argument. However, this is not nature taking its course but human greed fuelling massive killings. The largest markets for ivory products are China and the United States. What disgusts me the most is that it is the elite that are buying the ivory trinkets and carvings to cement their standing in society. The icing on this madness is their belief that the trinkets or carvings are good luck charms, an aphrodisiac (really?) and are a sign of wealth. How low the human race has sunk is beyond my comprehension. The cycle of ivory trade is one of pain and loss of lives. Park rangers are killed daily in the line of duty and war lords like Joseph Kony from Uganda sell ivory to buy arms and continue reigning terror among the innocents. Do not get me started on the crimes his army has committed against women and children as he seeks to quench his power hungry soul.   That is why the action of Kenya to burn over 100 tones of ivory is very significant. It sends a message that Kenya will not tolerate illegal trade in wildlife. It is a cry to the world to pay attention before elephants and rhinos become a tale like the dinosaurs. Many people especially in Kenya have been of the opinion that the ivory should have been sold at an estimation of 172 million USD and the money used for conservation efforts. I choose to disagree; great strides have been made in banning ivory trade in some states in America and parts of China. Releasing such amount of ivory to the market will only refuel the trade and result to more poaching. On the other hand guarding ivory stock piles is an expensive affair and would require 24/7 surveillance. The danger with this is that we have some rotten corrupt individuals who would not blink an eye when sneaking the ivory to the black market. So what better way to stick it up their faces other than burning the stock piles to ashes! We are simply saying elephants are worth more alive, let me explain;   Tourism in Kenya is the second largest source of foreign exchange revenue following agriculture. The $1 billion a year industry is a source of livelihood for thousands of Kenyans while our South African counterparts earn more than $ 7 billion every year accounting for around 7.9% of its GDP. I could go on and on about the benefits we derive as a continent from live animals than dead. I recognize that this problem is not only unique to Africa but conservationists around the world are racing against time to save other endangered species like the white rhino, sea turtles, jaguar, panda, white sharks among many others. What has gotten us here is human greed. It is the lack of respect for any other creature that walks on the face of the earth. We have forgotten that man may be supposedly the most intelligent on the web but every species has a role to play in the functioning of the food web.   We are destroying our planet at an unprecedented rate. We have cleared forests to build cities and expand our suburban neighborhoods, we have polluted the same rivers that give us life and turned our ears deaf to the conservationists’ voices of reason among us. History however, will judge us. Generations to come will hold us responsible for not protecting that which was entrusted to us. We owe it to them therefore, to be stewards of this beautiful planet until we can pass the torch to them.
    May 02, 2016 1419