This week we are going to take a look at Goal 3: Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages. With nearly 2,000 ONIL stoves installed in households surrounding Lake Atitlán, TRL is improving the health of our beneficiaries directly by replacing open-cooking fires with improved cookstove technology. Over 84% of households in the TRL’s project area still use wood as the primary source of energy for cooking. When wood fuel is burned indoors, it emits particulates and dangerous gases that can reach 10-20 times above safe exposure levels. Those who spend more time indoors proportionally such as women, children and the elderly are at greater risk of the associated health hazards. Exposure to these dangerous levels of indoor air pollution results in respiratory infections, chronic pulmonary diseases such as bronchitis, and lung cancer. Additionally, open-cooking fires increase the risk of burns and eye problems. Introducing an ONIL stove to these homes will reduce indoor air pollution by over 99%, positively affecting the health of an estimated 9,840 individuals.
SDG 3* suggests that to ensure healthy lives and well-being for all, healthy lifestyles, preventive measures and modern, efficient healthcare must be accessible to everyone. The steps necessary to meet SDG 3 include ending preventable deaths of children under five, and reducing illness and death from hazardous pollution. Promoting preventive measures is an especially important strategy considering the huge amount of resources that are spent on the treatment of illnesses that are relatively simple to prevent. Respiratory illness in rural Guatemala is no exception.
Here at TRL we couldn't agree more. Yet preventative measures like improved cookstove technology are not as widespread as they could be. At TRL we promise to provide ongoing support, maintenance and education to every family that owns an ONIL stove to ensure lasting health benefits. This way, we are doing our part to ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all.
*The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are the 17 objectives set by the UN in 2015 that address global challenges related to poverty, inequality, climate, environmental degradation and more. Each goal is broken down into multiple targets to guide governments, businesses, civil society and the general public to work together to achieve each SDG by 2030. Here, you can read more about each goal, their respective targets, and the ways in which each of us can support progress towards a brighter future for all.