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Kelly Lavelle's Fundraiser:

Empower 100 ElleSolaire women entrepreneurs to sell solar in Senegal

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Kelly Lavelle


During their most recent field visit to some of the remotest villages of the Saloum region of Senegal, Hessah and Kelly received a heart-wrenching reminder of the daily hardships and injustices of life for rural women. The most poignant moment was crossing paths with Aisha, a young pregnant women (by six months!) rigorously chopping wood with a large heavy axe. When we asked Aisha where her husband was, she pointed to a hut. Her aunt called out 'where do you think? he's asleep of course!'. It was 11.30am in the morning. Everywhere we went, we found groups of women labouring away at their daily tasks, while the men where only to be seen sitting chatting under the shade of the trees.  Energy poverty and gender discrimination are two major problems facing rural women in West Africa. ElleSolaire's response?  To recruit, train and equip rural women to become clean energy entrepreneurs, empowered distributors within their local communities. Providing dependable, affordable, and clean solar products allows these women a rare opportunity to earn an income, to gain respect, voice and authority within their communities. We start them off with simple solar lighting technologies and then diversify into clean cooking solutions as soon the network is well embedded.



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