Relief International programs in Ghana are solution-oriented in their introduction of appropriate technologies that address systemic health and environmental challenges. The initiatives include successful potable water products, and fuel-efficient cookstove production and dissemination efforts. The need for potable water results from limited access to clean water where water sourced from wells, rivers, bore holes and taps is not purified and causes high rates of bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, cholera, typhoid fever among others.
The use of traditional cookstoves is devastating on many levels. These cookstoves emit greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide and methane, and aerosols such as black carbon contributing to a range of acute health impacts and environmental degradation. The World Health Organization estimates harmful indoor air pollution from inefficient cookstove smoke to be one of the top five threats to public health in poor, developing countries. Where the per capita consumption of charcoal for cooking is the highest in West Africa, Ghana’s natural resources are under increasing pressure and its forest reserves and related ecosystems are becoming ever more threatened. Ghana is estimated to have the highest deforestation rate in West Africa.
In this context, EnterpriseWorks, a division of Relief International (RI/EWV), takes a dynamic, multi-faceted approach to enhancing livelihoods and encouraging social and environmental sustainability. Building upon and deepening the successful market and distribution linkages in Ghana, RI/EWV has developed a social enterprise venture to promote low cost, high impact products to low income households.
Additionally, Relief International's Water and Sanitation, Hygiene (WASH) project, funded through USAID, works to improve access to safe and adequate water supplies in Ghana. The project aims to provide basic sanitation infrastructure in schools, clinics and households. It also seeks to promote complementary hygiene practices to maximize the health impact of improved infrastructure.
Ghana - Current Programs
Ghana: Promoting Energy-Efficient Stoves
Charcoal usage dominates the list of household energy fuel options in Ghana, particularly in urban areas. To help reduce carbon dioxide emissions among charcoal users, Relief International/EnterpriseWorks-VITA (RI-EWV) has been promoting the use of 'Gyapa' brand energy efficient stoves among charcoal consuming households, school kitchens and commercial food vendors in Ghana since 2007. Learn More...
Ghana: Creating cost-effective solutions to household needs for clean water
The goal of this project is to create a market for inexpensive household water filters in Ghana and Nigeria by demonstrating that they are a cost-effective solution to the water quality problem faced by many low-income consumers in both countries. This project will demonstrate that the CrystalPur™ water filter, in particular, meets consumer needs and can be distributed profitably by the local private sector. Learn More...
Ghana: Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) Project
Through the Ghana Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) Project, Relief International is at work in over 160 rural communities, improving access to safe water supplies, providing schools, clinics and households with improved sanitation infrastructure, and promoting complementary hygiene practices to maximize positive health impacts. Learn More...