The Capricorn Foundation has donated 1,200 portable solar lamps to 10 schools in informal settlements in various regions of the country.

With the country’s electrification still below 50% and worse in rural areas, having access to electricity and lamps to study at night is a luxury for many learners.

Recent surveys conducted by Greenville Solars have revealed that learners and their families in the informal settlements turn to alternatives, such as using candles, torches and cellphone lights, to substitute the absence of electric lights for studying at night.

These alternatives can limit learners from studying at night and, in some cases, can cause fire incidents as the country has reported various informal settlement fires, especially at the coast.

In response to the need for access to light at night, the Capricorn Foundation partnered with Greenville Solars: Edu-Light Project and, on 7 September 2023, handed over solar lamps to 317 learners of Havana High School.

The school is the first of ten recipient schools receiving 1,200 lights donated by the Foundation, valued at N$294,000.

The other schools that will benefit from this initiative are222 learners from three schools in Omaruru, namely S.I. Gobs High School, Paahe Primary School and Ubasen Primary School, as well as 243 learners are from Usakos Secondary School, Elifas Goseb Primary School, and E.P.S. Primary School.

In Kunene, 204 learners from two schools outside Opuuo, namely Oshisoko Mobile Unit and Otjamaungu Mobile Unit, are also earmarked to benefit, as well as 214 learners from Okankororosa Combined School in Okongo Circuit, Ohangwena region.

The Capricorn Foundation first partnered with Greenville Solars: EduLight Project in August 2022 to donate solar-powered lamps to vulnerable learners identified in schools in northern Namibia who do not have access to electricity at home.

The Foundation Executive Officer, Marlize Horn said the continuation of the partnership with Greenville Solars on the initiative is not only the learners who directly benefit but the entire household.

This is because the household often has several siblings and other family members living in one shack.”We are grateful that we can make a positive change in the lives of these learners and their families,” she said.

Through the Edu-Light Project, Greenville Solars aims to provide solar lights to students living in informal settlements and rural areas without electricity access.

The project surveys schools to assess the need, identify learners from informal settlements (shacks) with no electricity, and provide them with solar-powered lamps to help them study at night.