Taken from www.iapnews.wordpress.com - 10th June 2010

DUMSI: For Narimaya Darai (24) of Dumsi in Byas municipality-5, preparing food was tantamount to playing with her health.

Headache, dizziness and eyesore were common, thanks to the smoke emanating from a traditional stove. The good news now is that health woes have gone with the installation of an improved stove in her house.

Like Narimaya, Madhumaya too is heaving a sigh of relief. Dizziness, headache and eyesore have become a thing of the past after she switched to improved stove.

“Improved stove has improved our health,” say housewives in unison, thanking the Regional Alternative Energy Service Centre for installing improved stoves in 10 households with help from the Rural Empowerment Society Tanahun (REST).

According to Sarita Gurung, chairperson, REST, the improved stove programme began in 2006/07.

Alternative energy engineer Pawan Acharya says around 10,000 improved stoves have been installed in Tanahun, Lamjung, Gorkha and Nawalparasi and an improved stove drive has been launched in Byas municipality and 23 VDCs in Tanahun.

REST field coordinator Padamraj Khanal says improved stove can be built with soil, bricks and rods for Rs 300. “The improved stove has become popular among rural folks because it does not cause health hazards. Besides, it can be installed in a single day,” says REST’s assistant accountant Eliza Gurung. Improved stove has benefited students too.

“My children can now focus more on their studies as improved stove saves their time,” maintains Khadak Bahadur Darai. According to engineer Acharya, improved stove has been a real boon for rural folks as it reduces firewood consumption and health hazards.