Impacts

We work with rural communities, developing renewable energy systems to improve their health, education and income. Through connecting remote communities with a source of clean energy and training them to use it productively we have seen a dramatic improvement in the following areas of their lives.

Enterprise and Livelihoods

We facilitate clean energy systems with the aim to improve poor people’s incomes and give them the independence they need to sustainably change their lives.

Our Solar MUS water pump has helped Sumina increase her income by growing cash crops

To this end we train people and adults in entrepreneurship, explaining to them how renewable energy systems can be used for profit and teaching them basic finance and bookkeeping skills. They then take the energy into their own hands, using it to start businesses or improving existing ones. This can be as simple as installing a radio in a shop to attract customers, or using water from pump systems to plant cash crops such as garlic and chilies. Both of these methods have increased the incomes of people we’ve worked with by 50%.

This increase in income means an increase in resilience. When they can improve and control their income streams, people are better able to deal with hiccups like a bad harvest, an unexpected disaster or a medical bill. They can save money to protect themselves from poverty, and they can invest in their futures, and their children’s futures.

‘I have access to water all year round. I’ve planted potatoes, cabbages, tomatoes. I take vegetables to the market and sell them…I am able to look after my family’s needs. I feel capable, and full of happiness.’ – Sumina, farmer in Muralibhanjyang, Nepal.

Learn how we are giving people living on the shores of Lake Victoria the power to improve their livelihoods.


 Youth and women empowerment

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We seek to empower women and young people, moving them away from unproductive tasks like wood collection and into positions of responsibility and independence. The systems we install provide water and fuel, so that women and children are able to spend more time working to generate an income, caring for family members or taking part in education. We also encourage group discussion with community stakeholders with the goal of allowing parents to keep their children in education for longer.

When planning projects, we set up focus groups to consult women and young people so that their wishes can be worked into the plan. We also ensure that they are represented on community project committees. This gives them a chance to prove their leadership and decision making abilities to the wider community.

In addition, the systems we install reduce the time that women and young people have to spend on menial tasks, freeing them to pursue their own interests and plans for the future.

When planning projects, we set up focus groups to consult women and young people so that their wishes can be worked into the plan. We also ensure that they are represented on community project committees. This gives them a chance to prove their leadership and decision making abilities to the wider community.

I feel that I have my own identity. I am getting an opportunity to learn new skills”. Sabina Behana – Card carrying Nepalese citizen and member of her community’s project committee

Learn how we are working in partnership with UNICEF to create bright futures for young people in Nepal.


Improved Education

Gertrude

If you’re a parent, and one of the 1.3 billion people without access to clean energy, you face a simple, terrible choice: my child’s education or my child’s health.

In order for their children to study in the evenings, the poorest families across the world have to burn solid fuels or kerosene. Collecting these fuels is difficult and time consuming, while the smoke they produce causes indoor air pollution. This pollution kills 2 million people every year – mainly women and children.

By providing households with clean, affordable light sources, Renewable World is able to make evening study a safe activity, whilst simultaneously reducing the burden of fuel collection. We also help to supply energy to schools and other educational facilities across the world.

(Picture Source: ‘Tanzania Gallery Two: May-June 2013’ from old site)

‘I now have light for my small children to study’ – Gertrude Oleche, farmer in Lwanda Rombo, Kenya

Learn how our skills training has helped Kamala Pangeni to improve the productivity of her small farm, providing income to support her family.


Empowering Energy Poor Communities

Over 1.3 billion people have no access to clean, safe energy. When their land dries up, they cannot pump water for irrigation. When they fall sick, there is no electricity for medical centres to treat them. They want to lift themselves out of poverty, but lack the power.

This is where we come in. We consult people in the world’s poorest communities, assessing their needs and capabilities and establishing together how they can be provided with safe, renewable energy.

We and our partners provide the installation costs and technical expertise needed to set up renewable energy systems, but they are run by community members. Community project committees ensure that:

  • Maintenance is carried out.
  • Benefits of the projects are distributed fairly
  • An appropriate, sustainable tariff is set for energy use.*
  • Those who cannot afford to pay are not left out.

We are careful to ensure that every group within the community can contribute to planning and running the project: women, men, young people and people of every social background have their say.

*These tariffs cover the running/maintenance costs of the projects. They are not set for profit, and the money does not go to Renewable World or its partner organizations.


Improved Health and Sanitation

Nurse-Carla-at-the-Monkeypoint-Health-Centre

Our renewable energy systems help health centres, such as the health centre at Monkey Point, by enabling them to freeze essential, perishable supplies such as vaccines and HIV tests.

We are also active in improving day to day health. By providing people with access to clean renewable energy, we save them from having to fill their houses with smoke by burning fuels like kerosene and dung.

The water pumping systems we have installed across the world prevent women and children from injuring their backs carrying water, and allow people to wash their hands and bodies regularly.

We also work to improve toilet facilities. In villages where we have installed biogas digesters, we have connected new toilet blocks to those digesters. This means people no longer need to defecate outside, and that even their waste can be used in powering the community.

“I am happy, happy happy! When they told me about it in December I didn’t think it would happen but when the freezer arrived last week and the lights and sockets were installed it was like a dream come true!” – Carla, Nurse at Monkey Point Health Centre, Nicaragua

Learn how our Community Owned Biogas for Livelihood Enhancement Project (COBLE) project has helped to improve the health and well-being of community members in the Terai region of Nepal.

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