The New Solar-Powered Bakery in Ang'iya, Kenya
Since highlighting earlier in the year how a new, solar-powered bakery was being constructed on MMS’ land in Ang’iya, Kenya, we are now delighted to report that it is up and running.
Sister Gaudencia informs us that the months of July and August were particularly busy, as some of the equipment purchased for the bakery needed to be transported to the small village of Ang’iya from Nairobi. The installation of the solar system, funded by Conrad N Hilton Fund for Sisters (HFS), is already proving effective in a region of East Africa, experiencing constant interruptions to the electricity supply.
Having completed their bread training course in Rongo, the widows were all ready to go, trying out the mixers and other equipment with support from their instructors. To officially launch, what is being called, the Lady Safi Bakery, on August 30th 2023, there was a Mass which they, other women, staff from the hospital and villagers attended. This included a lot of singing and dancing as an expression of deep gratitude for the gifts given by Jugend Eine Welt and HFS.
Immediately afterwards, the widows started work, preparing the dough, in order to begin baking bread. They feel very pleased about the new skills they have acquired in this area. The ones, who have undergone the training in Rongo, are happy to share their knowledge with the rest of the group members.
You can see opposite how well the first batch of the bread turned out - so perfectly that all those who attended Mass, nearly 100 persons in total, were treated afterwards to hot loaves of bread and cups of tea - without payment. Then, to add to the joy, those people, who were passing along the roadside, also came in for the feast and joined in the celebrations.
The widows have since organised themselves into 6 working groups, comprising 5 women per group, and in a single day, two groups take turns in the bakery. The first group reports to work at 6.00 am and leaves at 12 noon and then the 2nd group takes over from 12.30 pm until 6 pm. The oven is quite small, baking only 15 loaves per round, which means that the women have to bake many rounds in order to meet increasing local demand. However, this suits them well; the local market for their bread and buns is growing very fast with villagers, hospitals and schools already becoming regular customers.
The widows pass on a million thanks to Jugend Eine Welt and HFS for their wonderful support, which has made this exciting, new project possible! Everyone involved is most grateful.