Solar lanterns bring hope to remote villages of Narok

The wider Narok County has witnessed its fair share of drought and famine due to changes in the climatic patterns of the area caused by massive deforestation and envi­ronmental degradation of the Mau Forest. Narok, once considered a water tower with a forest cover of more than 76 percent 20 years ago, currently has a forest cover of less than 33 percent caused by a number of factors with the major ones being charcoal burning and large scale wheat planting as well as an upsurge in settlement schemes in the forest.

As one approaches the somewhat dusty terrain of Narok town, one can’t help but notice the maasai women adorned in the famous maasai attires of wrap around (shu­kas) and beads dangling on their necks as they carry logs of firewood on their backs while precariously balancing their children on top of the logs. The spectacle is charac­teristic in the wider Narok County as most homesteads still rely on firewood energy for cooking.

Norparakwo Koriata has been a stern dev­otee of firewood energy which she has used for over 30 years in cooking for her seven member nuclear family as well as another eight members from her extended family

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