At an event in Accra, the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves and the Accra-based Ghana Alliance for Clean Cookstoves launched a new campaign to help change the way people cook. In Ghana, more than 80 percent of the population burns solid fuels like wood and charcoal for cooking, producing harmful emissions and a wide variety of environmental problems including deforestation, air pollution, and climate change.

The Campaign for Improved Cookstoves, dubbed “Obaatan Boafo” or “Mother’s Helper” locally, will encourage urban and peri-urban dwellers who depend on biomass and charcoal for cooking to switch to improved cookstoves that burn fuels more efficiently and effectively. As a result, the improved stoves can help cut smoke emissions, reduce the amount of money people spend on fuel and also protect the environment.

Through the Obaatan Boafo campaign, we are encouraging people to save money on fuel costs, reduce the amount of time spent cooking and fuel gathering, and also to protect the health of their families by using cleaner, healthier cooking methods,” said Doris Duodo, Ministry of Power.  

A launch event held at the Efua Sutherland Park kicked off the three-month campaign and brought together leaders in the cookstove sector in Ghana including the Energy Commission, Ministries of Power, Gender and a number of developmental partners including SNV, KfW. The event was also attended by some local manufacturers and importers of improved cookstoves and a group of Women Cookstove Advocates, who are embarking on a community door to door activation as part of the campaign.

The campaign, focusing on the message ‘Cleaner, healthier, easier cooking, every day,’ will have three key components: The Women’s Advocacy Campaign, The Community Market Activations, and the Radio Awareness Campaign.  As part of the campaign, advocates will visit homes within their communities and several urban markets during road shows and market activations with the aim of raising awareness and increase knowledge amongst the target audience on cleaner cooking solutions, their importance and benefits. The advocates will encourage women to register for an “improved cookstove hotline” so they can continue to receive information about the benefits of cleaner cooking through their mobile phones.  These market events will also be an opportunity for the public to purchase improved cookstoves at friendly rates. The campaign will also be implemented through radio talk messages and programmes to educate the public on benefits of adopting the stoves.

The Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves and its partner GhACCO have been involved in a number of activities in Ghana for the adoption of cleaner, more efficient cooking practices. The Ghana Girl Guides recently held an Advocacy Day, which was part of the Clean Cooking Forum 2015. The event brought together girl leaders from across Ghana to encourage government leaders to support efforts to scale access to clean cookstoves and fuels. In addition, the Global Alliance is partnering with the World Education International to develop an educational curriculum that schools can use to teach students about the benefits of cleaner, more efficient cookstoves and fuels.

Learn more about the campaign by contacting Kwesi Sarpong at ksarpong@cleancookstoves.org.