We have given 500 solar lights to nine UNHCR refugee camps worldwide. These lights were distributed via their education branch, however, were also used as part of camp safety and security and health.
There are 54,000 Sudanese refugees in a UN camp in Ethiopia; we have already given them lights on a trial program. They are using them to teach children, deliver babies, provide security. When it gets dark, they have no other options and the lights make an enormous difference in people's lives. The lights empower, without creating dependency. It gives them a chance to get ahead and provides learning so when they get home, they can get jobs and provide for themselves.
Giving individual lights empowers women, providing security at night in refugee camps, it lessens the environmental impact of kerosene and cutting of trees and brush for illumination, it allows children the chance to read.
The lights will be distributed to the 54,000 refugees in the Gambella camps run by the UN and will be taken back to their villiages when they are repatriated, providing long term benefits in education, health, safety, social cohesion and environment.
This project has provided additional documentation in a Microsoft Word file (projdoc.doc).
UNHCR Main Page
DOE Lighting Presentation
Role of Lighting in Refugee Camps