Project #119 | Empowering Women to be Solar Energy Entrepreneurs in Tanzania
Our partnership with Solar Sister
Just 7% of people in rural Tanzania have access to power, and regular power cuts mean even those with grid access are often left in the dark. Cooking smoke also causes millions of deaths per year and contributes to the single leading cause of death for women and children under five in the developing world.
Our partnership with Solar Sister in Tanzania aimed to tackle energy poverty by building and supporting a sisterhood of clean energy entrepreneurs – a network of women in Tanzania who reached the most remote areas with affordable solar lamps, mobile phone chargers, and fuel-efficient stoves. This project helped local women earn income by kickstarting clean-energy micro-enterprises. It provided ongoing training, support, marketing materials and a proven business model to entrepreneurs, building strong communities of women selling clean energy where it was needed most. While entrepreneurs gained access to a new and profitable income-generating opportunity, experiencing increased autonomy, household decision-making power, self-confidence, business, communication, and leadership skills, mobility, and community status, customers benefited from using the clean energy products. Household savings from reduced mobile charging and kerosene costs increased the amount of money families have to spend on other things like children’s health and education. Through One Day’s Wages’ support of Solar Sister’s program in Tanzania, 70 new clean energy entrepreneurs were recruited and trained, who sold 8,061 clean energy products, reaching an estimated 40,305 total beneficiaries.
Our collective impact
People Directly Employed
Raheli is a smart and savvy grandmother with a primary school education, who was a Maasai herder before joining Solar Sister. She kickstarted a solar energy business with fellow Maasai women and is full of ideas about how to overcome the challenges of reaching mobile communities with affordable power options. Raheli started to use solar lights before selling them and found the benefits extraordinary. She didn’t have to buy kerosene anymore and found that leaving the light on outside warded off hyenas and leopards from attacking her animals at night. Solar Sister Entrepreneurs, like Raheli, are well-respected for the contributions they make to their communities. As a result, they gain self-confidence, decision-making power, and status. Like many of her fellow entrepreneurs, Solar Sister provides Raheli with economic opportunity and improved household financial stability. With the money she earns, she can care for herself and her family. “If I’m to take care of the house, I do so myself. I don’t have to ask for money, I don’t have to wait on him,” Raheli says.
Thank you for making this possible!
Our movement is grassroots, to us that not only means the work on the ground is led by local leaders with the support of the community, but it also means that we raise the funds for our projects through everyday donors just like you. In addition to all the donors that gave $25, $100, or $250 and the campaigners that ran a race or donated their birthday to raise funds, we also want to thank our generous business, school, and faith sponsors who believed in our work and joined the movement.
If you want to support future projects like this you can make a donation to our girls’ empowerment fund.