Wednesday, 31 August 2016

Charcoal collection

A number of the ladies who met me at Utange Baptist at my meeting with them requested charcoal. Although my preference was to buy equipment rather than things for sale, I made an exception here. This was for several reasons - one was that charcoal selling is traditionally a business of the poorest women in society, the second reason was that tout was requested by so many. The third reason was that it was a safe investment in that charcoal is used by most families and so there is always a market.
I decided to buy each of th women who asked three bags of charcoal. These bags are very large and traditional are divided into smaller amounts to be resold. I wa told they would cost about 1200ksh each, but in fact the cost was much less when I bought - possibly because I was buying so many - and the final cost was 1050 KSH per bag. My order was for 87 bags, and this was apparently why the charcoal dos not arrive on the Tueasday before I went on safari, as it took so long to bag up. Fortunately Festus was prepared to step in and manage the distribution, in fact, the charcoal apparently did not come till very late on Wednesday  and was not distributed until Thursday. 27 of the 29 women arrived to collect the charcoal; when I went to Casuarina House on Saturday the remaining bags (along with a lot of loose charcoal) were still there. Paul kindly took these photos for me of the distribution.


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