Sub-Saharan Africa


Agriculture, Clean Tech, WASH

The Client

Hivos is an international development organization guided by humanist values. Together with citizens and their organizations, Hivos aims to contribute towards just, inclusive and life sustaining societies where people have equal access to opportunities, rights and resources. Hivos works in partnership with others in the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Latin America on three impact areas: civic rights and gender equality, diversity and inclusion, and climate justice. Hivos’ approach is solution driven, and it builds wider movements for change by amplifying and connecting voices.

In 2009, Hivos partnered with SNV to start the Africa Biogas Partnership Program (ABPP). ABPP established a commercially viable market for biogas in 5 African countries: Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Burkina Faso and Ethiopia. ABPP’s principle was on the concept of using animal dung and organic waste to produce clean energy (biogas) and bio-slurry- a byproduct used to boost agricultural yields organically. This has effectively linked renewable energy with socio-economic development.

The Challenge

Hivos has championed offsetting carbon emissions in five sub-Saharan countries by advancing biodigester technology through the ABPP program. ABPP succeeded in developing the supply and demand side of the market. This included additional benefits such as a farmer extension service offering training and credit provision. This was all to create an institutional environment for the use and promotion of biogas.

Previously, the process of data collection was cumbersome. Since it was paper-based, it was prone to errors, loss, and damage. Due to the proximity of data collectors and the program, the data flow process was also extremely long with some data taking more than 45 days to be collected. The transfer of data from paper to excel also had errors, which took too long to be corrected. Conducting successive follow-up visits and periodic surveys, meant filling inefficient forms.

“Incorporation of TaroWorks and Salesforce in our operations has helped us solve the many challenges. We have been saving a lot of time to collect, share and conduct basic data analytics. Our data quality has tremendously improved and visualization through Dashboards has been giving us real time trends of various aspects of our project.”

Salome Wahome, Monitoring and Evaluation Officer

The Solution

TaroWorks’ offline mobile field service app was used to digitize operations by having the field teams install the app on their mobile phones and collect data needed to help manage business operations. This quickly transformed the process, and now Hivos is able to carry out surveys of their biodigester operations. Hivos can now capture data on product installation and maintenance, after-sales services, extension services, verification, and periodic surveys and then upload all this information to their Salesforce CRM.

The TaroWorks’ GPS system is also used to record the time and place of field visits. This additional functionality allows field agents to capture digital signatures and photographs of bio-digesters as well as contracts issued for verification purposes. Additionally, they also track the training of masons and biogas end users.

To date, Hivos and SNV have installed over 70,000 biodigesters in sub-Saharan Africa. This has led to the creation of over 4,900 direct green jobs with 45 new financial institutions offering credit facilities to clients who want to install biogas plants.


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