In the laboratory at St Peter's Hospital
It is with great pleasure that I write to confirm that we have raised sufficient funds for Phase 1 of our solar project at St Peter’s Hospital and to give you an update on progress. Phase 1 will involve the installation of solar power in all of the main hospital buildings, including the wards, operating theatre, x-ray department, laboratory, pharmacy and out patients department.
On 16th August, the ship sailed from Norfolk, England, containing all the solar components. It will take approximately two months for it to arrive in Lilongwe, Malawi. We have contracted a local Malawi solar company to do the installation on the Island and they are ready to commence this work as soon as the components reach Likoma Island.
At African Steps, we believe that it's vitally important to invest in the long term future of the hospital and so we decided to use robust, long lasting solar components, so that the system would be there and working well for many years. To give you an example of the quality of the components which are to be installed, we have used solar panels with a 30 year life.
We are very grateful to you for helping us to make phase 1 of the solar installation possible. The provision of 24 hour power will completely transform the care which the hospital is able to give.
But there is still more to be done and we are now fundraising for Phase 2 of the project, which will involve putting the remaining hospital buildings on to solar and also the setting up of a community charging station (“CCS”). At present most people on Likoma Island do not have any electricity and our plan is to use the solar system at the hospital to charge solar lamps which the community can then rent from the CCS. The profits from the CCS will be used to maintain the hospital’s solar system. Our dream is to reduce the use of kerosene on the Island (which is too expensive for most people and is also dangerous, as it leads to many serious burn incidences and respiratory problems). We hope that most households will be able to find the small cost of renting a solar lamp and this will mean that they will be more healthy and children will be able to see at night (it’s pitch black from 6pm) to do their homework.
Thank you, once again for your support and making our work possible.
With Best wishes,
Trustee, African Steps