The community of Bwa Nèf, like most other neighborhoods within the larger slum of Cité Soleil, has no electrical infrastructure. Residents pool money to buy a transformer, and then attach a multitude of wires to this transformer – one for each family. The resulting power is very weak. Every so often the overworked transformer explodes and a new one must be purchased. This is the system that the Lamp uses for its clinic – for its lights, fans and computers. Unfortunately, even this power is highly unreliable. Power is available for only a few hours each day, and over the last year the number of hours has been declining.
What this means for the Lamp is that we have been forced to use our generators on a near-constant basis. Generators are fine for back-up power, but they are noisy, polluting, and costly to run and to maintain.
We are thrilled, therefore, to announce that we will soon be “going green”!
Thanks to the farsightedness and environmental concern of certain of our supporters we will soon be installing solar panels on the roof of the pictured room, with a full complement of batteries next door. In addition to its other advantages, a solar system provides 24 hour power – through the use of the battery system – which will allow us to store medications, such as vaccines, that require refrigeration at the clinic site itself. To say that we are looking forward to this would be a major understatement!
The pictured room, by the way, has recently acquired a new cement roof, to allow the placement of the solar panels and will soon be the new site of our pharmacy.
For more information on the current work of the Lamp, please check out our latest newsletter here! For updates on our work, including this exciting initiative, check back on this site OR ask to join our mailing list here (please specify print or email!)