Appropriate Technology Collaborative

The Appropriate Technology Collaborative creates sustainable technologies that promote economic growth and improve the quality of life for low income people worldwide. We design, demonstrate, and distribute affordable technologies. Working in collaboration with local talent and other nonprofits (NGOs) we create solutions that are culturally sensitive, environmentally responsible and locally repairable in order to improve the quality of life and reduce adverse impacts on the environment.
Jan 15, 2013

Update on Business Climate in Cameroon

Solar Panel on a Roof
Solar Panel on a Roof

One of the goals of The Appropriate Technology Collaborative is to set up small to medium scale businesses in less economically developed countries.  Often there are many barriers to business development.  The regulations for starting a business can be obscure even to local people with years of experience.  We have found ourselves or our partners standing in line for hours to get documents stamped only to be told that there is yet another set of stamps required before a business is legal.

Fortunately in Cameroon the government has set up a fast track for starting new social enterprises.

From the US Small Business Administration Website:

"Recently, the Cameroonian government has brought two new agencies in Cameroon to make the business environment more friendly. The first one is the creation of a one-stop shop for new companies. That means instead of needing three to six months to create your company, you can do that now in three to five days. Another agency, the investment and promotion agency that facilitates all the processes businesses have to go through when they want to do business in Cameroon. So, for example, the agreements, even the facilities like for electricity, water, they can take care of that so that the business person just cares about meeting people. So these are two agencies that have been created which improved the business climate."

With your support we can teach "Circuits and Solar", send teaching kits and solar hardware to our local team and get them started in a sustainable business.

Thank you,

 

John Barrie

Solar Light System #3
Solar Light System #3
Nov 21, 2012

Expanded offerings!

Our girls
Our girls

Our class for the girls will be taught in March of 2013, and materials are on their way to Guatemala.  Based on the girls' goals of operating a cooperative and the business potential, we have expanded the course.

Originally, we would be teaching them the basics of circuits and solar technology.  Now we are adding transistors to the curriculum.  Transistors are the basis of all electronic devices.  Having this key knowledge, the girls would be able to create a variety of businesses to support themselves.  Having this skill set will allow the girls the flexibility to respond to the needs of their community as it integrates with technology and their knowledge will give them a level of personal power to take care of their needs and their families.

In March, we also hope to talk with the girls about their school being the base for classes that we would teach to fellow nonprofits about solar, solar cooperatives and creating solar businesses.  This would also give the girls a chance to work with others outside their community, building their people skills.  

In the middle photo you will see our girls: Yolanda, Elisabeth, Selena, Reyna and Lorena.  

Links:

Oct 16, 2012

Lesson plans educating and exciting students!

In preparation of sending our solar kits, we sent Mr. Monthe our basic lesson plan for our Circuits and Solar class.  He responded that his students have responded enthusiastically to receiving the plans. Below is a direct quote from his email; French is the language in Cameroon.
  "During my teaching, at the questions and answers time, most students always tell me that , they want to become solar entrepreneur and there will be light everywhere, more micro solar jobs creating . Last time during a solar class, a student say that he want to design and create a solar Kiosk where he would be selling solar light and charging of mobile phones , as assignment , I asked the whole class that design a solar kiosk on their own with little description for next week."
We are proud to be helping these children learn and change their lives.  Interest in the course has expanded to the neighboring villages and Mr. Monthe has prepared lesson plans for them.  This allows other teachers, homeschoolers and even adults to learn about solar and circuitry.  All of this in anticipation of the hardware that we hope to provide through your generous donation.
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