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Project Journal

 
Project title Light up our Futures
Country Liberia
Project description

Without modern energy services, the poor will go on being poor and the sick will continue to be sick. Without electricity, schools and homes will remain without adequate lighting, businesses will find it harder to develop and the streets will remain dark at night, particularly in rural areas. Despite these facts, approximately 88% of Liberians both in urban and rural areas remain without access to electricity, hampering their ability to study, becoming entrepreneurs, work and connect with the outside world. Consequently, the majority of Liberian households, especially in rural areas still use solid fuels — wood, charcoal and open fire — for cooking and heating, with serious health implications for especially women and children.

Lofa is the county bordering Sierra Leone. This geographic position resulted in the county being the most war affected county in Liberia: The potential reduction of poverty in Lofa through an increased access to renewable electricity also supports Liberia’s effort to recover from the civil war which resulted in the destruction of the country’s main infrastructure. A particular focus is thereby given on rural communities because their inhabitants constitute the most vulnerable group in the county: their remoteness translates into fewer access to qualified educational and health services, lack of means of communication and transportation and ultimately in a lack of income generating opportunities. 

The action is developed around 3 integrated components, methodologies or results.

Result 1, is focused on facilitating the development of mini grid solar electricity services in homes and rural isolated communities in Lofa County. The rationale is that improving access to affordable energy in rural communities would help end poverty and build shared prosperity. Currently, the majority of Liberians, particular in rural areas live without access to electricity. As a result, their businesses can not operate after dusk, their schools lack power for technology, and their children struggle to study on wildfire at night. 

Result 2, will improve health and education in targeted communities through capacity building of key stakeholders in renewable energy and construction of reservoirs with taps to distribute water from hand pumps that will be equipped with solar pump installations in schools and clinics. Despite efforts to improve water and sanitation, Liberia still suffers from lack of safe drinking water sources and sanitation facilities, especially in schools and clinics in the northern region. Improved awareness about water, sanitation linked with renewable energy as well as provision of water and hand washing facilities to public health units and schools in targeted communities will enhance better living conditions and advance life opportunities in terms of reducing child mortality, maternal mortality, and other diseases and improve primary school enrolments. 

Result 3, will increase livelihood opportunities through productive use of energy. 

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Project Number (CRIS) FED/2014/353-458
Project component Off-grid/small-scale electricity production
Technology sector Solar photovoltaic
Technology sub-sector Efficiency cooking (Fuel Saving Stoves) Capacity building Mini-grid Water pumps
Objectives

The overall objective (OO) of the action is to contribute to poverty reduction in rural communities in Liberia. This will be achieved by increasing knowledge about and access to renewable energy that is affordable and sustainable for villagers in rural Liberia with focus on Lofa County (Specific Objecive (SO)).

Impact to date

As at February 2018:

The results are: R1 - Mini grid solar electricity services in 5 rural isolated communities in Lofa County provided; R2 – Health and education in the project communities are improved to offer better living conditions and life opportunities; R3 - Increased livelihood opportunities through productive use of energy are created.

448 customers are now connected and the remaining are anticipated to be brought online in the coming months

 

As at June 2016:

There have been build two out of three power houses and the street light poles have been made.

 

It has been made possible to provide a no-cost extension and the connections fees are low. Then the low-income communities have the possibility to connect. 

Testimonies Not specified
Implementing body Plan International Deutschland EV
Total budget 1,890,146
EC Contribution (planned) 1,417,610
Project operating start date 20-06-2015
Real end date 28-03-2019

Contact Details

Name Florence Mc Bain 
Address Plan Deutschland, Bramfelder Straße 70, D-22305 Hamburg 
E-mail Florence.McBain@plan.de