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RENEWABLE ENERGY

A LIGHT IN THE DARKNESS

Renewable energy is the foundation of Child Legacy International’s Sustainable Program Development Model.

Wind and Solar

The rural poor in Africa are imprisoned by the cycle of poverty not only because of drought, hunger, disease, and lack of educational opportunities. Underlying all of these obstacles is a more basic, and more daily, even hourly, limitation: There is no power in their lives. There is no light to read a book at night. There are no electric tools or instruments to facilitate any task. There is no internet with which to talk to the world or market a skill or a product. There is no hot water to wash one’s hands. There is no refrigerator to keep food from spoiling. And there is no health care because hospitals cannot be established where there is no power.

The people in the vast, rural regions of Africa without electricity are unable to diversify into marketable skills or engage in the most rudimentary commerce because they live in darkness. Ultimately, they are unable to provide a better future for their children because there is nothing to power the ideas or skills of even the most determined individuals.

Renewable energy is the single element that sets our work—our effectiveness—apart from the many other charities and NGOs working in developing countries around the world. Renewable energy allows CLI to serve areas previously considered unreachable. Our wind and solar systems are more reliable and far more cost-effective than virtually any national grid on the continent of Africa, which means we can work and serve our community without interruption. This sustainable source of power allows us to serve rural areas far outside national electricity grids, to work with communities that are often unreachable by both government and non-government organizations.

At the Malawi Campus, we use four wind turbines, 2 solar houses, 380 stationary solar panels, three solar tracking racks, and a state-of-the-art operational system and battery monitoring to power a hospital that serves tens of thousands of patients each year. Our Chingele Clinic in Zimbabwe is also powered completely by solar panels and wind turbines, which provide a stable source of electricity for lighting, equipment, and medicine refrigeration—and allows our highly experienced staff to deliver thousands of babies and treat illnesses as severe as HIV/AIDS.

With CLI’s development of these alternative sources, renewable energy has started to become available in pockets around Msundwe. The government of Malawi even responded to our development in the region by extending its grid further into the rural area. And local residents have begun to see the light: People in this rural setting now understand that with a solar panel and a battery you can have lights, a radio, and sometimes even a small refrigerator. It’s a first step—but it has greatly improved the lifestyles of many already.

Quick Facts:

Less than 50% of Sub-Saharan Africa is electrified.

In Malawi, wind and solar power electrifies CLI’s on-site clinic, hospital, and surgical wards, as well as staff housing, guest quarters, indoor plumbing, and hot water tanks.

Only 15% of Malawi has access to electricity, and the rural areas —where the vast majority of the population reside—have less than a 7% chance of getting power.

Some local residents have begun to see how their lifestyle can change with a solar panel and a battery.

Quick Facts:

Less than 50% of Sub-Saharan Africa is electrified.

In Malawi, wind and solar power electrifies CLI’s on-site clinic, hospital, and surgical wards,as well as staff housing, guest quarters, indoor plumbing and hot water tanks.

Only 15% of Malawi has access to electricity, and the rural areas —where the vast majority of the population reside—have less than a 7% chance of getting power.

Some local residents have begun to see how their lifestyle can change with a solar panel and a battery.

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