With over 100 Prakti stoves currently serving 17,000 children in schools in Port-au-Prince, a recent UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs report evidenced the success of the WFP and ILF’s School Feeding Program. Though the driving focus fell to the importance of fuel and economic savings in post-earthquake Haiti, feedback from kitchen workers in the partner schools has revealed the profound impact of Prakti stoves:
Cooks report that while they were obliged to work outside the kitchen because of unbearable indoor temperatures before the arrival of the Prakti stoves, they are now able to conduct all of their activities comfortably in the kitchen. They are also experiencing relief from previously incurable cold and flu symptoms; says a cook at the College Christophe, “Working in a hot kitchen is like working in hell. And now working in a cool kitchen feels like heaven.”
Kitchen workers are also celebrating an end to heavy lifting to refuel the stove—one woman reported suspicions of a miscarriage because she had been lifting heavy pots on and off a fire while pregnant)—and to the constant presence of ash in their clothes and hair and on their face and hands. They are now doing less laundry, buying less detergent, and wearing nicer clothes to work, thus professionalizing their jobs to a greater extent.
They also praised Prakti stoves’ speed and the ability to cook in fewer pots. The WFP has nearly 500 more Prakti stoves ready to be deployed, expanding the program’s success to more cooks and children.