Roxana Anez is an indigenous woman, President of a women’s organisation in the Tacana territory of the Bolivian Amazon.
“We were invisible! I felt so frustrated. That’s why I decided to become a representative in the women’s organisation in my indigenous territory”, recalls Roxana.
Roxana has been the driving force behind the solar ovens, a project that focuses on renewable energy, funded by Christian Aid and implemented by our partner Illimani.
Her community has traditionally relied on firewood for cooking, but it is expensive, and people have to travel far to get it. With the natural fuel being scarce and expensive, the solar ovens have become a precious tool, saving time and money.
“We identified the serious problem of our dependency on firewood for cooking, which led not only to deforestation but also to health problems caused by hours spent cooking over a smoky fire pit. Not to mention the difficulties and long hours spent by women in searching for dry fuel especially during recent years when we have experienced prolonged rainy seasons”, Roxana says.
Although the cooking time doubles when using solar ovens, compared with the traditional ones, they do not need permanent attention. Instead of going to collect wood, women now have more time for activities such as making garments and handicrafts and take part in community activities.
The project has improved the lives of 250 families that live in this part of the Amazon.