In September 2010 a solar system was installed in Il Oirero Primary School, serving three classrooms and providing security lighting for 4 hours every evening, as well as three security lights outside and a power socket. The school is located in Amboseli, a game park on the slope of Mt Kilimanjaro, where the Masaai population is tending their shrinking herds of animals (changes in the climate), as well as working in the game reserve.
The school has 285 pupils, and is the only Primary education available in the area. As such it is a very important stepping stone into more qualified professions for the community of 3 500 people. Their current livelihoods are disappearing fast.
IMPACT – latest update September 2011
David Kitasha, Community Officer of Gamewatchers and member of the school’s Parent Teacher Association reports that the system is functioning well. With the installation, the school started offering evening study time, and there are now 182 students accessing 3-4 hours of additional study time with clean light in the evenings. Between September 2010 and June 2011, the standard 8 students (last year of primary school) has seen an increase in the average grade from 119 to 231 points, which is an almost 100% improvement. Still some way to go, by at least now, they stand a fighting chance of getting into Secondary School.
Also very positive, this term, which is also the start of a new academic year, has seen enrolment up from 274 to 285 pupils.
Since the evening study time was introduced with this installation, the school has not saved any money on kerosene, however, it is expected that the households are saving on kerosene. At our next field visit we will explore this a bit further.
The school has put in a TV and a radio (at their own expense), which in Amboseli offers the only access to real time news and media. Quite ground breaking in its own right!
The teachers and the parents are also using the system to charge their mobile phones, saving them time and several US dollars every week, mostly on transport to get to a place where the phone can be charged.
Perhaps the best news of it all is that the local chief has organized a fundraiser in the community to do a similar installation at the community center. He told us that GIVEWATTS had opened his eyes to the potential of solar power.
- Higher grades
- Better health
- Almost 100 % Higher Grades
- Better Health condition of the families