Location: Muhanga, Rwanda
There is a proverb I’m sure you’ve heard before that says “give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” LED Safari is doing just this, going beyond providing affordable solar lighting to teaching people to make solar lights themselves. Today there are many organizations that are spreading solar power to rural areas in developing countries. The new range of options and prices has made solar power increasingly accessible to poorer households. However, there is still a barrier to the poorest, who are unable to take the risk of investing in a solar lamp that could break. They feel safer continuing to spend the same amount on kerosene, even if the lamp would be cheaper in the long run.
LED Safari began in 2010 with a plan address this concern. They train people to make their own lamps out of the main components. This not only allows people to be creative in the design of different lamps, but also ensures that the lamps can be repaired if they should break. The model also provides people with valuable skills and empowers them to create unique businesses making different kinds of lighting products, or repairing them when they break. In addition, solar lamps can be made out of just about anything, so this program is promoting a new kind of upcycling.
To date, LED Safari has trained 300 people and produced 1,000 lamps in Rwanda, Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania and India. Their program is providing skills, creating new entrepreneurs, and making solar power more accessible to the poor. LED Safari also conducts workshops in developed countries for schools, companies and other organizations interested in learning about solar power or looking for a great team building activity. Do you know how to make a solar lamp?
Environmental impact: Avoided use of fossil fuels, including avoided emission of GHGs and harmful substances
Measurement: LED Safari
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