Ghana Rural Lighting Project
The Women and Youth Survival Foundation Programme (WAYSFOP), a local NGO based in the Nkwanta South district in the Volta Region of Ghana is collaborating with Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Partnership (REEEP) in Vienna, Austria; Global Village Energy Partnership (GVEP); Barefoot Power in Australia; Energy In Common (EIC), New York, USA; Christian Rural Aid Network (CRAN), Cape Coast, Ghana; Toyola Energy Limited, Accra, Ghana; and African Renewable Energy Alliance (AREA) to enable the people of the district and surrounding districts to have access to renewable energy products like solar home lighting systems, cook stoves, and information in order to combat climate change.
The Nkwanta North and South districts have a population of about 187,000 inhabitants (2000 Ghana National Population Census). There are about 311 settlements and only 18 have access to electricity. In April, 2008, the former Vice President of the European Parliament, Hon. Mrs. Mechtild Rothe in the company of others from the European Parliament visited Nkwanta, Volta Region, Ghana to inspect projects funded by the Marie Schlei Association in Hamburg, Germany. Their visit coincided with the energy crisis that hit Ghana at the time. Mrs. Mechtild Rothe pledged to support WAYSFOP through collaborations with other organizations so the people of the Nkwanta districts have access to renewable energy products so more people could have light because the energy crisis was affecting the people and also more people were using kerosene which was very expensive.
When she returned to Germany, she did exactly what she promised and today WAYSFOP is collaborating with these partners to provide renewable energy products to the people in the districts.
Energy In Common (EIC) now provides energy loans to clients through CRAN. Toyola Energy Limited supplies the products to WAYSFOP for distribution to the clients who repay within 3 months for small loans and 6 months for big loans.
Since March, 2010, WAYSFOP has so far registered 600 clients for products worth US$70,000. From 25th to 26th July, 2010, Mr. Hugh Whalan and Scott Tudman from EIC and Mr. Abraham Akuokoaa from CRAN visited WAYSFOP in Nkwanta and interacted with clients.
Again, from 14th to 21st August 2010, Mack from EIC visited loan recipients in Nkwanta, Volta Region, Ghana. It is our hope more clients will get funded so they can have access to light in their homes. Once the people stop buying kerosene, poverty levels will reduce because kerosene is scarce and very expensive in the Nkwanta districts of Ghana.
I’m very grateful to Mrs. Mechtild Rothe - Germany, James Smith –REEEP, Stewart Craine – Barefoot Power, Patrick Agbesinyale – CRAN, Suraj – Toyola Energy Limited, Hugh Whalan – EIC, and all who have contributed so far to enable us reach this far.
Project Director, WAYSFOP, Nkwanta, Ghana
Tel.: +233 243 235 131