Projects that the Saadani Safari lodge has been directly responsible for are as follows:
The construction and oversee of the upkeep of the water pump responsible for supplying the village with fresh water. The project was designed to give the village complete control over the project. Staff were hired and given salary to be responsible for the machinery and repairs.
The improvement of the facilities and supplies at the only local dispensary in the village. With the help of the lodge, the building itself was improved and restored. Money was also given for general upkeep.
The Primary School in the village has been rebuilt and maintained in part from funds collected from guests and staff at the lodge.
Scholarships – students are chosen to be sponsored for their studies through secondary school. There is no secondary school in the village, so the students must select a boarding secondary school to attend. SANA pays the school fees, uniform costs, shoes, food and materials for the whole year.
We have supplied rubbish bins throughout the village and assist in the education of collection and refuse treatment; this includes a once a year litter picking exercise with school children on the beach.
Sustainable technology at Mkange village
Mkange is a village in Coastal region with a population of around nearly 3,000 people. The village of Mkange has long been making charcoal by cutting hard wood trees and burning the logs to create charcoal. This charcoal is then shipped by dhows to Zanzibar via Saadani coast for use throughout the island. Since the village has only been cutting and not planting any trees, and most of these trees take hundreds of years to grow, most of the forest has now sadly disappeared. Saadani Lodge, in collaboration with SANA, has provided the village elders with charcoal kilns and charcoal extruder for use to produce charcoal, the difference being in a sustainable way. Agricultural waste from fields and farms (like corn husks for example) is collected and put in the kilns, this is then burnt down to a fine dust that is in turn compacted and binded to create small charcoal briquettes. Waste is simply turned into heat to cook food on.
Biogas systems are those that take organic material (feedstock) into an air-tight tank, where bacteria breaks down the material to release biogas – a mixture of predominantly methane with some carbon dioxide. The biogas can be burned as a fuel, for cooking or other purposes, and the solid residue can be used as organic compost. Methane burns with a blue flame, without producing any smoke or soot. It is therefore an environmentally friendly cooking system. Introduction of the new efficient, compact biogas system would not only help urban households in utilizing their domestic wet waste, but also help prevent millions of premature deaths of women and children in rural households due to indoor air pollution caused by smoke and soot from burning fuel wood. We have installed one at the lodge and testing its progress to develop it on a larger scale.
Community lodge through sana
January 2010 saw the beginning of the construction of an Earth friendly community lodge at Miseni forest just outside Gongo village. The construction is expected to be complete by the middle of this year from when the lodge will start its operations. The lodge is themed to empower the community of Gongo village as well as conserving the history of Kiwati hill and its surroundings. It is expected to create harmony between the societies of Gongo and their environment as the society will learn sustainable ways to obtaining a living. The lodge will be totally eco-friendly and run entirely by the local village. All profits therefore will go straight to their needs.
We see education as the most critical factor in the socio-economic development of the region. We have taken a pro-active role in assisting the local primary and secondary schools. This year we have rebuilt the school in Saadani village thus providing a safe and stable environment for children to study in. Furthermore SANA our non-profit sister company sponsors the annual tuition fees for a growing number of students; and kind guests have donated the majority of the educational material being used.
Another micro-financing initiative to allow poorer communities to develop whilst also protecting areas of outstanding natural beauty. We have set up a co-operative of women from Matiwpili village under the directorship of Thomas Wouters, an agronomist from Belgium, to produce vegetables and fruits using environmentally friendly methods. A selection of fruit and vegetables are grown and sold to the lodges and villages throughout the year providing employment and revenue to develop.