The KISS Training and Education Center is a space where individuals and families from the nearby village of Kasisa, Mwanza Region, can learn how to implement cutting edge, affordable and sustainable farming and living technologies that will allow them to be better informed and educated and ultimately improve the standard of living for themselves as well as the entire village community.
The Center will focus initially on the following ten training and education projects:
Sustainable and durable buildings
The Center will teach villagers how to use different materials and construction processes to build durable, affordable and more sustainable homes. Possible solutions include the use of locally grown materials such as bamboo and the manufacturing of clay bricks using brick making tools.
View our Sustainable & Durable Building Projects here.
Energy efficiency is an important aspect of the world’s need to reduce the further rise of global temperatures and thereby mitigate the adverse impact of climate change. The Center will educate village families about different ways to make their homes and businesses more energy efficient thereby reducing the carbon footprint of the village and its reliance on renewable resources.
View our Energy Efficiency Projects here.
To provide an independent and reliable source of energy for each family in the village, we will combine forces with Barefoot College to teach villagers how to install photovoltaic panels on or near their homes. The approach by Barefoot College is unique in the sense that it does not require any prior engineering knowledge nor literary by the trainee. Instead, a straightforward color coding system will guide the solar panel training and installation process. For more information on this rural, women-centered sustainable development process, go to https://www.barefootcollege.org.
View our Renewable Energy Projects here.
Clean Water Access
Currently, access to clean water is currently a laborious, time-consuming and inefficient undertaking for most village families. The goal of the Center is to provide a direct source of reliable, clean fresh water for every family in the village. To accomplish this goal, the Center will cooperate with Dallas members of Engineers Without Borders - Texas Chapter who have worked on fresh water projects in several developing countries around the world. With the help of Engineers Without Borders, the Center will identify the most efficient and least costly solution for fresh water access given the geographic and climatic conditions of the village. For more information, see https://www.ewb-texas.com/previous-projects/.
View our Clean Water Access Projects here.
Toilet Design/Sanitation System
As in many African villages, there are few toilets in the village and open defecation is often the only option. The health problems from such practices are substantial. The Center will teach villagers how to install and maintain simple waterless toilets for each home. In recent years, engineers across the world have designed a large number of waterless toilet systems specifically for developing countries.
View our Toilet Design/Sanitation System Projects here.
Sustainable Agriculture and Aquaculture
Since farming is the main source of income for most families in the village, an improvement in the standard of living of the villagers requires an increase in farming output. However, a rise in farm productivity should not be obtained by compromising the health of the farmers or the village’s environmental quality. Hence, the Center will focus on teaching only those productivity enhancing farming techniques that are sustainable for both the farmers and the ecosystem of the village.
The Center will provide information to villagers about availability and earnings potential of alternative professional activities within the skill set of village farmers. In particular, the Center will explain the possibility of income generation, either full-time or part-time, from running fish farms on Lake Victoria. Since commercial fishing including illegal fishing on Lake Victoria has led to serious overfishing and a depletion of the lake’s fish stocks, producing fish through fish farms is the only economically viable and environmentally sustainable way of fish production on Lake Victoria. For environmental and other problems facing Lake Victoria, see https://www.newvision.co.ug/new_vision/news/1513841/strict-laws-salvage-lake-victoria.
View our Sustainable Agriculture and Aquaculture Projects here.
Garbage Reduction and Recycling
Garbage avoidance and recycling is a neglected objective for many rural communities in low-income countries, mostly due to income constraints and lack of knowledge. The Center will educate villagers about simple, low-cost garbage reduction and recycling methods such as biofuels from biomass. Biofuels can be used as a substitute for fossil fuels to generate heat, power and/or chemicals. Biofuels offer additional benefits including sustainability and reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. For more information, go to https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0196890407000763.
View our Sustainable Agriculture and Aquaculture Projects here.
Education and Vocational Training
The goal is to enhance the education experience and outcomes of the village’s students and to improve business, organizational and marketing skills of the villagers to bring their agricultural products to markets in nearby villages and cities. The education experience of the students in the village is hampered by the lack of adequate school infrastructure, appropriate teacher training and student access to necessary education materials such as books. While infrastructure and teacher training issues are beyond the scope of the Center, the Center will help students to gain access to pivotal school books by partnering with initiatives such as Books for Africa. For more information, go to https://www.booksforafrica.org/
View our Education and Vocational Training Projects here.
The health care situation of the families living in the village today is precarious due to the lack of health care infrastructure and direct access to health professionals. Preliminary results from the Millennium Village Project (MVP), spearheaded by development economist Prof. Jeffrey Sachs, show that one of the most notable changes in the life of the MVP villagers was access to a local medial professional, typically a village nurse, leading to measurable improvements in maternal health and better health outcomes in general. For more information, go to https://fsi.stanford.edu/news/fog-development-evaluating-millennium-villages-project
As a result, the Center will support the funding for the training and subsequent recruitment of a local medical professional, i.e. a village nurse or nurse practitioner. While the cost of this medical service should be covered eventually by a medical fee paid for by each village household, the Center will pay for these medical expenses initially and will continue to do so until the increase in the average household income in the village is large enough to shoulder the monetary burden of this service.
View our Health Care Projects here.