Solar for Children Project

Jan 27th, 2009 | By John Waller | Category: Solar PV, Solar-Aid, Sub-Saharan Africa
This project will create jobs for the poorest people, and bring solar power to local communities and school children of Tanzania.

This project will create jobs for the poorest people, and bring solar power to local communities and school children of Tanzania.

The majority of Tanzania’s electricity supply is generated by hydropower. This is highly vulnerable to drought, which is occurring more frequently with climate change. In 2006, a severe drought resulted in countrywide power cuts and blackouts.

Currently, the electrical grid reaches a small proportion of the country’s population. In rural areas, families rely on firewood for cooking, kerosene for lanterns and disposable batteries to power small electric appliances such as radios. Rural schools often have no access to electricity at all, which makes study difficult. Many children never receive the education that could help them build lives free from poverty.

Hydropower is already under immense strain and cannot be extended. There is an urgent need for Tanzania to use alternative sources of energy to improve access to electricity.

The Solution

Tanzania benefits from some of the highest levels of sun exposure in the world. This makes it ideal for establishing solar-power as a major source of electricity, which can be done in three ways:

Micro-solar enterprise

Solar-Aid urgently needs to train poor people in rural Tanzania to build solar-powered radios, mobiles and lamps. With your help, Solar-Aid can teach them finance and marketing skills, so they can set up their own business selling their products to local people, at an affordable price.

Solar education

To fight global warming, we must work with school children and teachers to raise awareness of the need for renewable energy sources. With funding, Solar-Aid can teach them to assemble solar lanterns, so children can study at home.

Solar school installation

This project aims to install 300W systems in 100 schools over four years. This will give pupils and teachers access to the Internet, as well as lighting for evening study and extracurricular activities. A reliable electricity supply will help increase literacy, school attendance and teacher retention.


By supporting this project you will help to:

  1. Alleviate poverty by providing poor rural people with a valuable income.
  2. Raise awareness of solar energy as a clean and renewable source of power, which can replace polluting fossil fuels.
  3. Make solar power technology readily available to school children and their respective families, enabling students to study during the evenings.

The project urgently need funds to pay for materials and training:

  • Micro-solar materials: Solar glass, diodes, wood, wires, crocodile clips, rechargeable batteries, battery holders, battery connectors and fold-back clips, frames.
  • Support funds and training for SolarAid Project /Training coordinators.
  • Volunteer expenses and accommodation.
  • Solar materials for schools.
  • Travel and insurance costs for volunteers and staff.
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