The Lake Victoria Basin, straddling Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda, supports some 30 million people, one million of whom are employed in fishing-related activities. With a Human Development Index (HDI) value of 0.55, Kenya is ranked 149 out of 188 countries (HDI 2018). Nearly 50% of the population live on less than $1.25/day and only 7% of lakeside communities have electricity, hindering energy-dependent development. The fishing industry is the main source of income for tens of thousands of Kenyans, with circa 44,000 fishermen and many thousands of women working in fish processing and trading.
Our partner organisation for this project, Renewable World (RW) has been providing access to renewable energy for communities in Lake Victoria through the installation of solar powered microgrids since 2013. Solar microgrids provide clean, affordable and reliable electricity for last mile communities; they light homes, power businesses, pump water for drinking, sanitation and irrigation and reduce the harmful effects of kerosene use. Access to renewable energy not only helps drive improvements in health, education and income but, replacing or reducing the use of fossil-fuels, reduces pollution and brings benefits for the environment.
To date, RW have installed micro-grids in ten sites in Lake Victoria. This project aims to further strengthen and diversify livelihoods for up to 60 households (300 people) in Sika and Mirunda villages, by adding 60 new electricity connections to these newly installed solar microgrids, thereby optimising the capacity of these microgrids, (which are already supporting 31 and 28 connections respectively) and building capacity for micro-enterprise development.