With efforts from the Empowered Community Network, 262 solar batteries were distributed with support from the Ed Nef Foundation to 150 households in Keur Simbara, Kobongoye and Soudiane. These three Senegalese communities have completed the Community Empowerment Program and have taken steps to realizing their collective visions that they developed during the program—sending their girls to formal school, managing income-generating projects, building health centers, and so much more. Solar power has been an important tool for communities to make continued progress toward their goals.

Coura Traoré, Soudiane

17-year-old Coura was busy during exam season of 10th grade. “Since getting solar lights in my village, I can now study from 9pm to midnight. Before getting the solar batteries, my parents were spending 4500 FCFA [~$9] per month to buy candles. I have better grades now because even when studying by candlelight, I couldn’t study later than 9pm. The solar power also allows me to charge my phone and have access to a dictionary on the phone, as well as talk to my sisters, who live 200 kilometers away, if I need school supplies.”

Coura would like to be a police officer after graduating high school.