Cooking should be something associated with life: it's all about nourishment, good health and sharing a meal with the ones you love.
But sadly, for a lot of people in the developing world, cooking can lead to serious health problems and even death.
Many people cook on open fire stoves indoors, and with nowhere for the smoke to go, it is simply inhaled by the cook and his or her family members.
But there are safer and more efficient ways of cooking with wood. ENLACE, a social and religious organization working in El Salvador, has started a project called Cooking Up Love, which aims to provide families with smart and simple eco-stoves.
The cost to provide a stove and training for one family is $200. Unlike an open fire, the eco-stove channels smoke out of the home. It also uses 66 per cent less wood, and a closed chamber retains heat much longer than an open fire.
According to the organization, using these stoves will lead to a 60 per cent reduction in respiratory disease as well as a 25 per cent increase in family income.
The stoves are built from local materials, which may vary from area to area.
"For example, in some communities a metal cooktop is preferred, whereas in others, the terra cotta "barro" surface is used," Michelle Bueno, part of the Cooking Up Love team, told Visual News.
It doesn't take too long to install an eco-stove in someone's home.
"With the help of a friend (often a church member that's been trained on stove construction and has worked on building many stoves) and an ENLACE technician, a stove can be built by a family in about four hours," Bueno says.
The need for a cleaner method of cooking is clear. The CleanCookStoves.org website states that smoke from a cook stove claims a life every 16 seconds. Most of those killed are women or children.
Alongside the human cost, open fire cooking stoves are inefficient and damaging to the environment. And they use a lot of wood, leading to deforestation in many parts of the world and costing those who use them large amounts of money.
To learn more about the project, or if you're interested in donating or starting your own fundraising drive, visit the Cooking Up Love site right here.
Via Visual News