WakaWakas are lighting up the night in Mali where the sun sets at 6 p.m. Now there is no more need for women to sit in darkness; unable to work or socialize. It also eliminates the need for using toxic and hazardous kerosene lamps.
WakaWaka Lights are being put to use by Dogon women in Mali to replace hundreds of dirty, toxic and hazardous kerosene lamps. The Foundation for Women Initiatives in Dogon (Stichting Dogon Vrouweninitiatief) acquired these lights through the WakaWaka Foundation’s Energy Poverty Aid Programme. Jacqti de Leeuw, the chairman of the Foundation for Women Initiatives in Dogon, sent us this clip of WakaWaka Lights being put to work, thereby enabling the women to continue working after sunset.
To use these extra hours effectively, Jacqti trains these women to become entrepreneurs in order to promote development through trade as opposed to aid. Jacqti explains: "In Koundou, Mali (West Africa) the women use the WakaWaka Lights to prepare their goods for the market the next day. The peanuts that they have grown on their land with their microcredit are put in small bags to sell at the local market. Other women are preparing the cotton that they have harvested and will sell it the following morning to other individuals who will make cotton-fiber and traditional cotton cloth from it. The children use their mothers’ WakaWaka light to do their homework. The people in this village live in small houses made of loam and live a very simple and hard life, but they are resilient and strong. They have to be!"
You can read more about the Foundation for Women Initiatives in Dogon on their [Dutch] website.