Now fully funded and operational - video and Powerpoint presentation below!
While Ric was in Baregota Village in October 2015, the villagers, and especially the women, identified a diesel powered grain mill as something they would really find useful. Currently, they grind their grain using the method shown in this picture. Back breaking, time consuming, and laborious, it was a method that they longed to consign to history.
Once back in New Zealand, Ric got going with fund raising, while Amlaku researched the various models available, finally settling on a very solid model made in Poland. Once the $12,000.00 was raised, Amlaku went to Addis Adaba and purchased the mill. It then took 2 days by truck to get it to Lalibela, from where it was carried on the shoulders of the villagers the 8 kms to the village. As the diesel motor weighed in at 400 kgs, this was quite a journey! With the assistance of a knowledgeable mechanic from Lalibela, the motor and the mill were set in concrete in an empty house in the village.
Two weeks later, once the concrete had cured, the final assembly took place, and on Saturday 24th September 2016, the first grain was turned into flour, to the absolute delight of the villagers. Five men have been trained up in how to operate it. The local villagers are being charged a very low rate, while those from villages further afield will be charged at the same rate they would pay if they took their grain up to Lalibela to have it done there. This will create a fund to pay the men operating it, to cover running costs, including diesel, and to build up a maintenance fund to cover future costs.
A nice touch is that when harvest time comes - late October - the villagers, as a group, will harvest the fields of the men operating the mill.
The file below is the 'big shift' of the grain mill from Lalibela to their village, Baregota.
Powerpoint Presentation - Moving The Grain Mill To The Village December 2016.pptx
now with bonus images of it in operation and some very happy ladies - and the new ear defenders donated by Bunnings Palmerston North, NZ