2017-09 September Newsletter

From Cans to Cookstoves: High school recycling program funds stoves

As concern continues to grow over the environment and climate change, recycling remains one of the biggest ways to reduce our ecological footprint. 

Jerry Ragan, Guidance Counselor at Marist High School, is taking the impact of recycling one step further. For Marist High School, funds generated through the school’s collection and redemption of recycled cans and bottles are donated to help improve the lives of families cooking over open fires.

Jerry first heard about StoveTeam after attending a lecture on the dangers of open fires by StoveTeam founder Nancy Hughes. The urgent need for a lifesaving alternative to open fires left an impression on him.

At the time, Jerry was attempting to solve another, more local, concern: mitigating the garbage and waste generated by the school. He wanted to incentivize students to recycle their waste, as well as empower them to better the world in more ways than one.

He decided to combine his passion for environmental conservation with the need to provide fuel-efficient alternatives to open fires. Students and staff collect and sort recyclables and redeem them at recycling collection centers. The money is then donated to StoveTeam to provide families in need with an Ecocina cookstove.

“I wanted to clean-up our campus and teach students environmental awareness while changing the lives of people in the third world”, he said.

Students have the opportunity to transform the hard work of sorting and rinsing recyclables into a tangible solution that reduces fuel consumption and smoke in the homes of families in Central America and Mexico.

Jerry hopes other schools will follow suit and put funds generated by recyclables into providing stoves and changing deadly open fire cooking practices. With enough momentum, he believes funds could be generated to start a stove factory.

We are incredibly humbled by Jerry and Marist High School’s generosity and creativity when it comes to addressing the threat of open fire cooking. With their support, and yours, we’re working to protect the environment and the health of families in Central America.

If you are interested in fundraising for StoveTeam, please contact

StoveTeam receives University of Oregon Seed Grant

With little to no disposable income, families often restrict what appliances they buy. How important is social status associated with certain appliances, such as the cell phone, when it comes to deciding to buy household appliances? For these families, can the perceived value of cookstoves be elevated via marketing campaigns? 

These questions are part of a research project that will be launched in collaboration with the University of Oregon.

To advance this project, StoveTeam was awarded the first University of Oregon Seed Grant. The grant was designed to provide funding for a collaborative project between a University faculty member and a member of Global PDX, an alliance of Oregon-based organizations focusing on international development.

StoveTeam will work with Dr. Aparna Sundar, Assistant Professor of Marketing in the Lundquist College of Business, as well as our partners in Copán Ruinas, Honduras. Stay tuned for updates as this exciting and much-needed project unfolds.

Join us on an adventure of a lifetime!

Do you love to travel and experience new cultures? Are you seeking a more fulfilling travel experience?

If so, join a StoveTeam volunteer service team. During your trip, you’ll have the opportunity to make and distribute cookstoves to communities in need, witnessing first-hand the impact of Ecocina cookstoves. You’ll also explore cultural sites and meet new friends who share your passion for travel and volunteerism while helping change lives, including your own.

Upcoming trips:

October 28- November 5, 2017- Antigua, Guatemala 
January 20-28, 2018 - Antigua, Guatemala
January 20-28, 2018- Esteli, Nicaragua
March 10-17, 2018- Antigua, Guatemala

Secure your spot now! 

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