Solarcentury, SolarAid’s founding company, yesterday helped light up thousands of lives in Africa with a £98,000 donation to help fund our solar projects. The gift, worth around 20,000 solar lights, is part of Solarcentury’s ongoing pledge to give 5% of its annual profits to SolarAid.
Our model is to sell solar lights to African families at a fair market price in order to build a sustainable market for solar across the continent. For each home with a light, children are able to do their homework in the evening and the average family saves £85 per year on expensive and toxic kerosene. As well as educational and financial benefits, the families’ health is improved. In sub-Saharan Africa indoor smoke causes around 400,000 deaths a year and there is a clear and present danger of fire.
Frans van den Heuvel, CEO of Solarcentury said: “It makes us all very proud to witness SolarAid’s success. They are now the biggest distributor of solar lights in Africa having sold 847,154 lights to date. Establishing SolarAid has proven to be key to Solarcentury’s broader purpose: to make a big difference in the fight against climate change through widespread adoption of solar power.”
Sarah Howarth, Solarcentury’s Content and Design Manager, is currently working with Solarcentury and SolarAid on secondment in Kenya. She commented: “It’s very satisfying to work in the solar industry. You know you are making a positive contribution to society. And it’s even better when you know your hard work is going to result in African families being able to take the first step out of energy poverty and ultimately out of poverty itself. These sorts of results are highly motivating on the days when you are having to push the extra mile.”
Andrew Webb, MD of SolarAid said: “The relationship between SolarAid and Solarcentury is a special one. For a growing charity such as SolarAid there is nothing more helpful than having dedicated supporters that share our vision and are with us for the long term. Solarcentury’s gift supports us in finding innovative ways of rapidly building the market for solar lights in Africa leading to the eradication of the Kerosene lamp by 2020. Without this vital support SolarAid wouldn’t be in the position we are today: running a social enterprise selling 65,000 solar study lamps a month.’
Other companies interested in supporting our work with a percentage of their profits should contact Corporate Partnerships Manager Tessa Kipping – [email protected]
SolarAid are currently part of a UK government fund match scheme. All donations made by the UK general public will be DOUBLED! Click here to donate today.