World Vision and Panasonic Corporation have launched an Off-Grid Solutions Project in Narok County, Kenya. Panasonic has donated power supply stations, solar storage devices, solar lanterns and other lighting equipment at the launching ceremony held on January 31, 2019, in Ilkimati community in Narok.
This Off-grid Solutions Project is one of Panasonic's corporate social responsibility initiatives that are aimed at celebrating the centennial of the company's founding. This project is intended for communities in Asia and Africa with a large off-grid population, where Panasonic works with NGOs that are making efforts to address social issues. In Kenya, World Vision implements this two-year project as the partner organization.
The project will bring solar powered electricity to an area of Narok County that is not connected to the national power grid. According to the Kenya Population and Housing Narok Census, 22.7% of households countrywide are connected to the national electricity grid. In Narok County, however, only 5.6% of households are covered.
Specifically, the new project has provided two solar stations and lighting equipment for Ilkimati Primary School and Enkutoto dispensary. They have also received solar storage devices. In addition, Panasonic has donated solar lanterns to 150 households in the community. This will improve the wellbeing of children and communities in this remote area.
To enhance the sustainability of the project, the beneficiaries will be trained on basic knowledge of electricity and the system, and the maintenance of the equipment by the project.
Once the solar powered electricity is rolled out in the area, World Vision will support the community to run income generating activities such as poultry farming and school gardening that will be fully equipped with solar powered drip irrigation kits. They will also initiate reading camps - making use of the solar lighting system - to improve literacy competencies for both children and adults.