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Mar 20, 2020

Improving healthcare with renewable energy

Greetings! I hope this message finds you well. I know that this is a very distressing time for many people and families and my heart goes out to all those who are suffering and all those working so hard to protect us.

At this difficult time, I would like to share with you a positive story about a health centre in Kwale, Kenya, which has recently received solar power to improve healthcare provision for rural communities.

Kwale is a very poor county with little infrastructure development. 47% of its population currently lives below the poverty line. Access to affordable, adequate and reliable electricity plays a major part in the welfare of the people in the region. It is vital for the provision of education and healthcare services.

Over the last few months, Energy 4 Impact has identified 12 health clinics and 68 schools in the area, which are too far away from the national electricity grid or that are nearer the grid but cannot afford the connection fees. With your help, however, we are giving them the power they need.

The Godo Dispensary is a healthcare centre located 35 kilometres away from the main town, Lunga Lunga, along the southern coast of Kenya, near the border with Tanzania. The centre serves 15 villages within a radius of 26 kilometres. An estimated 7,624 people benefit from the care provided by 10 medical staff and 27 health workers. The dispensary offers a range of primary care and outpatient services, voluntary counselling, HIV testing and outreach lab services. It is also an important hub for dispensing medication to the community and for promoting public health education.

Prior to our intervention, the Godo Dispensary was using a small solar PV system. However, it did not meet its energy needs and without sufficient and reliable energy, healthcare workers didn’t have all of the necessary tools to treat patients and save lives.

Due to your generous support, we have now installed a larger solar system to enable them to use electrical equipment such as a steriliser, a refrigerator for drugs and vaccines, a suction machine for the maternity ward, a weighing scale as well as air cooling fans. It also powers lighting within the building in the compound and phone charging equipment.

I’m sharing some photos with you to give you a better idea of the difference that your generous donation is making.

Please keep supporting our Powering Villages Project. Energy is needed now more urgently than ever.

Thank you and be safe!

Kind Regards

Alessandra

Dec 23, 2019

Light for everyone at Kalokol Junior Academy

Dear Supporter,

It has been three months since I last updated you on the Powering Villages Project’s progress, so I wanted to share an example of the kind of transformation that a new supply of solar power can, with your support, bring to rural schools. 

In Turkana, one of the poorest regions in Kenya, affected by frequent droughts and terrible famines, Kalokol Junior Academy, which serves 226 students (110 girls, 116 boys), is now fully electrified. The solar photovoltaic panels that we’ve installed on the school roof provide lighting for 13 rooms including several classrooms a staff room, a kitchen, a dormitory, a washroom and a shop. They also provide power for computers, two fans, one TV, one laptop and 1 fridge. 

This has helped increase study time by facilitating early morning and evening classes. The student population in the area is quite large and the teaching staff and facilities are scarce. With proper lighting the school can squeeze in more classes, starting early in the morning and later in the evening when it’s dark.

Some students are also motivated to remain at school after normal hours, tapping into the new ITC resources or playing music on the keyboard. The Head Teacher says that students feel safer in a well-lit environment and their parents now encourage them to participate in activities before sunrise or after sunset. 

The school is very entrepreneurial, and has recently started using the surplus electricity to open a small shop and a restaurant, which offer typing services, refrigerated drinks, food and entertainment (through a TV) to the local community.

These two small enterprises generate precious extra revenue to cover school-related expenses as well as the solar systems’ maintenance costs.

Thank you again for your generous support. 

Please consider sharing this link with your friends: https://www.globalgiving.org/projects/give-african-villages-a-clean-energy-boost/. It will help us grow our community of supporters and raise more funds so we can extend the impact of our work.

On behalf of everyone at Energy 4 Impact I would like to extend our warmest wishes for a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Sep 25, 2019

Powering Villages makes progress on many fronts

Greetings!

Three months ago you made a generous donation to bring the benefits of renewable energy into rural villages in Kenya and Tanzania. Now we are writing to you to update you on the progress we have made.

In last three months our teams of specialised mentors have worked with 330 women entrepreneurs to improve their clean cookstove businesses. They provided these entrepreneurs with 12 days of training and mentoring focussed on strengthening their business skills and increasing sales.

We have negotiated contracts with solar equipment suppliers, who will provide photovoltaic solar panels to schools and clinics in some of the poorest and hardest to reach areas, enabling them to light up rooms and power educational and medical equipment. We have also undertaken surveys of 394 schools and clinics to establish their solar energy needs. 

We have been developing our model for providing a subsidy to the very poorest households to enable them to afford to buy small solar systems on credit. We now have about 1,500 homes enrolled in this scheme, benefiting, orphans, people with disabilities and elderly people.

We have been monitoring the progress achieved by village entrepreneurs whom we have previously helped to expand their businesses following the availability of power for the first time. We helped them to plan the development of their businesses; we helped them acquire new equipment to reduce their costs or offer new products and services. As a result, they have seen increases in their profits by 25%.

We are now re-visiting our plans – to identify new villages where we can bring all these benefits together, and at the same time have prepared a proposal to raise a significant new source of funding that would enable us to expand significantly our ambition for the Powering Villages Project.  

I have enclosed some photos so you can see the impact that your gift is making.

Thank you for helping us get the Powering Villages Project started, and we look forward for your continued support!


Best Regards

Alessandra

 
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