Beta Charitable Trust 2014

Two thousand solar lamps have been given to children and families in rural areas throughout Kenya to help with their education and accessibility – thanks to a £10,000 ERSF grant.

The lamps were received by students and the elderly living in areas without power – like the Gilgil area on the outskirts of Nakuru, a village in the interior with mud huts, and Rhonda a poor area in Nakuru City.

According to the teachers, the provision of solar lights has had a definite positive effect on the pupil’s education. The solar lights have allowed the pupils study longer at night and complete their homework on time. There is reduced burden on parents to buy kerosene. Jogbaru primary school, whose last year standard 8 students received the solar lights, recorded a significant improvement in the KCPE (national primary school exams) with the school moving from a mean score of 121 to 191.

BCT Administrative Co-ordinator Sarah Mullenger said: “Those that received the lamps called them ‘lifesavers’ and said ‘now we will be able to study and pray and do our work without worry of falling and getting hurt’.

“One young man leaves his home at 4am, in the dark to reach his work place, and didn’t even have a torch to guide him; he was so grateful that now he will be able to walk to work with a light to show him the way.

She added: “The main benefit of the grant received is that it has had a huge impact on hundreds of people, enabling them to access education in a more consistent way, be more productive during the later hours of the day when darkness falls and contributing to their safety after dark.
Additionally these people and communities have gained trust in our organisation which is invaluable in the long term as it gives us a platform to work elsewhere.

“Generally it is very rewarding to see how something as simple and low cost can make such a difference to people’s lives, this shows that we can do so much more with this resource.”

Grant Entry