Why we dig
earth smiles

Earth smiles are semi-circular shaped pits that capture rainwater. They are dug in our project areas in Africa to capture rainwater that will otherwise get washed away over the dry, barren soil. By digging earth smiles, we allow the water to sink into the soil. This way, we can regreen large areas in a very short amount of time, benefiting biodiversity, nature, people and – eventually our climate. Learn all about earth smiles on this page!

before-after before dodoma
before-after after dodoma

Pembamoto, TANZANIA (june 2018 - june 2022)

earth smiles dug


Across our regreening project sites in Kenya and Tanzania, we have now dug over 315,000 earth smiles. That means that with earth smiles alone, we are regreening 39,060,000 m² of dry land.

Our projects are entirely carried out by local partners and communities. This makes them committed and gives them ownership of the project, which ensures sustainability!

Why the semi-
circular shape?

The semi-circular shape of the earth smiles is an optimal balance between the amount of water captured and the labor requirements. Earth smiles are usually 2.5 meters long and 5 meters wide, which is about the size of an adult elephant! 

Earth smiles are dug on slopes, with the ‘closed’ side of the earth smile directing downhills. This way they can capture the water running downhills. The earth smiles do not only capture the rainwater, they also make sure that the water running downhills in between the earth smiles is slowed down. Now the water also has a chance to enter the soil in between the earth smiles.


Take a look

Our project sites are huge, this video is just a small peek at their scale! On our TikTok account, you can find a lot of videos about earth smiles, our other regreening projects and extra content. Go check it out now!

Buy your own
earth smiles

Want to invest in a cooler planet? Buy your very own earth smiles! By buying earth smiles, you ensure regreening and directly support an African farmer who digs the earth smiles. How? For this you first create an account, after which you choose the number of earth smiles that you want to have dug. An earth smile costs €8.