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Let there be light on the island! This is a solar energy project that will provide much-needed power to a very remote island in the South Pacific.
Currently, villagers use cooking fires, flashlights, kerosene lanterns and coconut oil for lighting at night. Local businesses must power office equipment with generators using benzene, which is bad for the environment, expensive and often out of supply. Solar power will enable children to study at night, community meetings to take place and local women to work on crafts or local artwork after dark. All of this will be done in an environmentally friendly and sustainable way. Villagers will save a significant amount of money by not having to purchase batteries, kerosene and benzene.
A community-owned timber business will use solar energy to power laptop computers, printers and its own lighting system. This solar power project will serve as a positive example to the community on renewable energy. When individual villagers see the results of the project they will hopefully invest in solar technology themselves.
The community will raise over a quarter of the funds required, and provide some building materials and installation. Around $3400 in funding remains, which you could help provide through the Peace Corps Partnership Program. With this funding, five solar panel stations will be created in community buildings throughout the village. The villagers here will be extremely grateful if this project is successful. Thank you and let there be light!
Note: This summary was provided by a Peace Corps Volunteer and the community administering this project.
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