BURN Manufacturing, East Africa
I left western Kenya in 2013 to come to Nairobi to work at a coffee mill. As a mother, I have always used a gas-lit, kerosene stove to cook for my family but it cost so much. Before the month was over, I was out of gas. When I used kerosene, it would affect my son and daughter. They were getting sick and it got very frustrating. BURN came to my mill to show us their Jikokoa stove. I was impressed and thought ‘This is the way to go.’ I didn’t even wait long to buy one. My next paycheck went to purchasing the stove.
With my old stove, I would spend about 850 shillings ($8) for gas, but it wouldn’t last the full month. I also had to purchase kerosene, which was another 150-200 shillings ($2) a day. Now I buy half a bag of charcoal, which costs around 650 shillings ($6), and it’ll last like a month and a half. I have convinced my friends to buy the Jiko and my sister too.
With the money the Jiko has saved me, I bought a cow, which I keep in the village I’m from. My Dad takes care of the cow, and I have also rented out land to grow maize.
I have always been enterprising and had an entrepreneurial spirit. My hope is to do more business and help the needy.
I have always dreamed of becoming a businesswoman and knew I wanted to leave the coffee mill, but having these savings is helping me do it faster than I ever thought I could.
Diana, 21, is a mother of two and has been a customer of Acumen investee, BURN Manufacturing, since 2014.