The OVO Foundation has announced that is expanding its energy access project in Kenya, electrifying over 300 schools and health clinics in the hardest-to-reach parts of Kenya.
Through Project Jua, the OVO Foundation is supporting the Kenyan Government’s overall electrification programme and helping the country leapfrog the need to power their lives from centralised polluting fossil fuel plants through innovative off-grid solutions.
Project Jua builds on its 2017 pilot, in which the OVO Foundation installed 20 solar systems in two of the poorest counties in Kenya: Turkana and Kilifi. The success of this pilot demonstrates the cost-effectiveness of delivering off-grid solar and storage on a relatively small scale in the development sector. Read more: Microgrid solution drives communities of the future
By installing solar systems the project aims to bring electricity to hard to reach areas that are currently off-grid or do not have access to reliable energy sources. The power will be used for educational equipment such as tablets and computers – helping to bridge the rural and urban digital divide – as well as lighting in health clinics which is especially important in a country where maternal mortality is more than double the global average.
For millions of people without access to electricity, electrification has brought life-changing benefits, leading to improved education outcomes, a safer environment for children to study at nighttime, and a reliable electricity supply for vaccines and medical equipment.
Project Jua is now expanding to five counties where electrification is far below the national average of 56%, including:
- Turkana (2.4%)
- Kwale (10.6%)
- Taita-Taveta (15%)
- Kilifi (16.7%)
- Isiolo (18.5%)
Gaby Sethi, Head of OVO Foundation and CSR, said:“At OVO Foundation we share OVO’s vision to power human progress with clean and affordable energy. Energy is an enabler that lays the foundation for effective and meaningful human development; without it, not much else is possible.
"We’re delighted to be benefiting 300,000 people over the course of three years, whilst helping to progress three of the Sustainable Development Goals, and supporting the Kenyan government’s national electrification project. By lighting rooms and powering equipment, we are creating a safer environment for those accessing healthcare services and helping bridge the rural/urban digital divide in education.”
OVO Foundation is the sole funder of the project, and is supported by 80,000+ OVO Energy customers who donate each month by adding at least 25p to their monthly statement. OVO Foundation will again partner with Energy 4 Impact to deliver the project, which shares a vision of creating a better quality of life for everyone through access to clean energy.
Godfrey Sanga, Energy 4 Impact’s Director, East Africa said: “We’re thrilled to continue supporting the OVO Foundation’s ambitions to expand energy access in Kenya. This initiative complements the government’s electrification efforts by targeting communities where grid-based solutions are not viable because of their remoteness and high investment cost.
"We owe the success of the pilot to the overwhelming support by county governments and to the effective partnership with the local communities, schools, health clinics, and Sollatek, the solar equipment supplier. The benefits of a scaled-up programme will extend to the poorest and most deprived people of Kenya.”