Children's rights NGO, SkyPower to bring solar-powered light to rural Kenya

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On Thursday, SkyPower announced that it has partnered with child rights organization Plan International to distribute its solar-powered light kits to energy poor households, schools and clinics in rural Kenya.

Over the course of a five-year initiative the two organizations aim to distribute two million of the kits, which include PV modules, integrated radios, LED lights, flashlights, USB cables and ports for charging mobile devices.

A main goal will be to reduce reliance on kerosene for lighting. Burning kerosene produces smoke and fumes that are harmful to human health and also carries the risk of fire.

Plan International cites a higher rate of infant mortality in kerosene-using homes, and notes the health risks of delivering babies in homes under the light of kerosene lamps and cellphone lights.

As of 2012 only 23% of Kenya’s population had access to electricity, and only 7% of rural residents. An estimated 75% of households in Kenya use kerosene for lighting.

The organizations say that the distribution will involve the targeting of communities to ensure that only the poorest Kenyans receive gifts of lights, instead of those who can afford to purchase them.

Plan International has had a presence in Kenya for over 33 years.

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