COVID-19 - Solar Aid

Location: Zambia and Malawi

Solar Aid is an international charity founded by Jeremy Leggett in 2006 with over 10 years’ experience of working to deliver solar lighting to the developing world. They provide access to solar lights in Uganda, Malawi, and Zambia to help catalyse solar markets and eradicate the kerosene lamp.

In April 2020, SolarAid launched the Moment of Sunshine Appeal, a fund established to respond to Covid-19 in Zambia and Malawi. Recognising that access to light was vital for healthcare workers treating COVID-19 patients, the Malawian and Zambian Ministries of Health considered SolarAid an essential service provider. In partnership, SolarAid carried out three key areas of work through the fund:

1. Donated and distributed solar products to rural health clinics and quarantine sites;
2. Disseminated crucial health information to rural communities; and,
3. Developed further support initiatives for rural clinics.

NextEnergy Foundation donated £20,000 to SolarAid’s Moment of Sunshine Appeal. £7,000 were directed towards efforts in Zambia, and the remaining £13,000 were used to kick-off efforts in Malawi in April. So far in Zambia, our donation contributed to reaching rural clinics, and quarantine sites across 10 provinces with 3,726 solar products, including solar home systems, solar torches, and portable solar lights. Instead in Malawi, the donation helped SolarAid install 500 solar home systems across eight rural health facilities, and 200 solar light radios, which enabled healthcare workers to receive up-to-date information about the virus and the Ministry of Health’s guidelines.