Light Libraries Appeal

Light Libraries are an innovative and cost-effective solution, bringing light when families in rural Malawi are plunged into darkness as the sun sets. Helping families earn, children learn and everyone feel safe at night.

In Spring 2022, we launched an appeal to create more Light Libraries

Fabriola borrows a light from the Light Library

Fabriola borrows a light from the Light Library

A Light Library is just like a library for books, but for solar lights. Borrowing a solar light from a Light Library, for a fee much less than it would cost to buy a candle, is an affordable option and helps build trust in solar products. Families also experience the solar light in their own home, removing the risk of later buying one.

Your support helped us raise £68,000!

In 2022, we’re aiming to reach 62 Light Libraries. Thanks to your incredible generosity we are now on track to set up 36 Light Libraries for students all across the country.

Each donation was match-funded by an anonymous family foundation

Dalitso and his teacher Beatrice

Dalitso and his teacher Beatrice

Each school is equipped with 20 solar lights that pupils can borrow in exchange for a 10 Kwacha fee per night – about 1p. They then take the light home to study, read, socialise and dream. It also means families spend less money on costly and toxic alternatives such as candles and kerosene. This means they can begin to save up to buy their own light.

With the help of a Light Library, children have a light that will power their learning and their dreams. When the darkness in rural Malawi descends, solar lights can light up houses and help the whole family stay safe.


Learn how a Light Library changed everything for Dalitso


The impact of Light Libraries is immense

Poverty and darkness prevent children from studying at night. This means they cannot get the most out of their education or ultimately help their families thrive. They know education is vital and they want to learn, a Light Library helps families begin their journey out of poverty.

Your donations mean that students like Rhoda can now use their solar light to read and study long into the evening. Now, Rhoda dreams of helping other people who are suffering finally seem within reach, “Once I finish school, I want to work as a nurse. I want to be a nurse because I admire when I see nurses taking care of the sick. I also want to care for the sick,” Rhoda says and continues, “I think that education will help me a lot. I work very hard at school so that I won’t struggle to go into the nursing profession.”

Rhoda’s family no longer have to waste a substantial part of their income on batteries for their torch as their solar light provides a more reliable and bright light. With the money that they save while renting the solar light, Rhoda’s parents hope to save up to buy a light of their own. In fact, the programme has been so successful that nearly 80% of families go on to buy a solar light after their children have used the Light Library.

Light Libraries are a cost-effective and innovative solution to help families out of the darkness and out of poverty. Your support means that more children can take a solar light home to read and study.

If you would like to support our ongoing work, you can do so by donating today.


Rhoda Unyolo and Head Teacher Beatrice Maluza, Tembetembe, Dedza District, Malawi, November 24, 2021

Richard, Light Librarian at Kalira School, Dedza District Malawi.
"This year we have 247 students have passed the zonal exams. And we expect good results for 2021 exams. This is happening because of the Light Library project."
- Richard, Light Librarian in Malawi
Fabriola reads to her sisters by the power of a solar light