Happy November to everyone out there - I hope that the arrival of fall (or spring!) is treating everyone well this year.
We have so much to report right now from Lesotho that I just want to let the pictures tell you the story of all the hard work the team has been doing. You heard last time about the start of our work powering a number of health clinics in Lesotho, and I am excited to report that we have now finished installing solar PV energy systems at 6 clinics in the most rural parts of Lesotho. You'll see in the photos that most of these clinics are high up in the mountains, and our team spent approximately 7-10 days at each of them to complete these systems, from breaking ground to commissioning. We are now operating these six systems as part of our Independent Power Producer (utility) portfolio alongside the Ha Makebe village system - we even have internet-linked dashboards that give us continuous updates on the power generation and conumption, battery voltages, and other system health indicators!
The 7th - and will be final - clinic that we will be upgrading as part of this USAID-funded project is the biggest challenge of them all. Lebakeng is located on the far side of the Senqu (Orange) River from the paved road, and there is literally no way to reach it by vehicle other than by a small plane (there is a tiny airstrip at the Health Clinic). This makes construction of any sort a challenge, and over the past several months our team has been exploring a number of alternative ways to overcome this (literal) obstacle. The solution we have selected creates both more work and more benefit for the community - starting this week (!) the Onepower team will be deployed to Lebakeng to build a low-level river crossing and connecting road that will allow our construction vehicles and supplies to reach the clinic. To maximize the impact of this effort, we have applied for and been granted approval from the Department of Roads to construct this as a permanent crossing, meaning that for the very first time in history this village will be connected by road to the rest of the country. We are incredibly excited to be undertaking this work and look forward to sending photos of that project in the next report.
Finally, one last point of interest to mention. Some of you might know that right now the 26th UN Climate Change Conference is happening in Glasgow. On behalf of Onepower I was invited to speak at one of the sessions of this conference, working to raise awareness of the challenges and potential solutions for enabling minigrid development to serve remote communities - just like we are doing in Lesotho. This approach is finally starting to gain visibility and traction as a viable path forward, and it is incredibly exciting to be on the forefront of that!
As you will not be hearing from me again before the end of the year, here is wishing everyone safe, happy, and healthy adventures in the coming festive season.
Project Reports on GlobalGiving are posted directly to globalgiving.org by Project Leaders as they are completed, generally every 3-4 months. To protect the integrity of these documents, GlobalGiving does not alter them; therefore you may find some language or formatting issues.
If you donate to this project or have donated to this project, you will get an e-mail when this project posts a report. You can also subscribe for reports via e-mail without donating.
We'll only email you new reports and updates about this project.
Support this important cause by creating a personalized fundraising page.Start a Fundraiser