During the winter of 2013 Nova was able to successfully convert an estimated 17 666 households to the Basa Magogo
(BM) method of igniting a coal fire.
Every winter (which runs from about May/June to August in South Africa) Nova recruits unemployed people from the highest coal using communities, thoroughly trains them in both the theory and practice of the BM of igniting a coal fire and then sends them into their communities to show the residents how to make cleaner, healthier and more efficient fires.
To achieve this, Nova has five Area Leaders who are living in the communities where the projects are being rolled out. Four of these Area Leaders are permanently employed by Nova. An Area Leader is responsible for the recruitment, training and management of a number of fieldworkers.
In 2013 about 45 fieldworkers were working on new BM implementations in seven townships. In an additional four townships 11 fieldworkers worked on monitoring and maintaining existing BM implementations.
In order to convert the approximately 18 000 households, Nova fieldworkers had to conduct invitations to a demonstration at just over 42 000 households. Approximately 20 600 households attended these demonstrations, which in turns presents a conversion rate of 81%.
Over the past ten years the proportion of South African households with access to electricity has increased from 77% to 87% (Stats SA, GHS 2002 & 2012) due to the government’s aggressive electricity roll-out programme. But roughly 290 000 South African households still primarily use coal for heating (Stats SA, Census 2011).
When three to four thousand of these households in one township light up every day during winter, it creates a thick blanket of smoke hanging over the entire community, causing all kinds of respiratory diseases…hopefully a Nova fieldworker will reach them soon to show them the BM way!