Hatch International’s project Solaii will be making big strides in the coming months. I recently traveled to Chennai, India, to meet with two of our on-the-ground partners: Indian Fisherfolk Development Program (IFDP), which is part of the Centre for Research on New International Economic Order (CReNIEO), and South Central Indian Network of Development Alternatives (SCINDeA). Solaii’s pilot initiative, which commences this fall, will provide 120 lamps across seven villages in the Pulicat Lake region of Tamil Nadu, India. One woman will be chosen from each village to be educated on the maintenance of solar lamps, sales, marketing, and business management: These seven women will become knowledge houses for solar lamp technology in their communities. The solar technology will not only serve as income generation for women, but will also reduce lighting costs for fisherfolk families.
Solaii’s solar lamps are more innovative and multi-functional compared to competing products on the market. They provide a renewable energy option to high-need communities that currently only have access to kerosene and low-quality flashlights. The lamps have been developed with continuous feedback from the villagers to ensure that they meet their needs.
Solaii’s vision is to reach as many people as possible throughout India by leveraging established distribution networks. We are seeking industry, NGO/micro-finance, and government partners to help us eradicate the use of kerosene as a lighting resource and empower communities globally with income-generating businesses.
I’d like to thank the rest of the Solaii team for all their hard work and dedication: Our three talented engineers Nicholas Imbriglia, Andrew Boggeri, and Matthew Ford; our three strong curriculum designers Shivangi Khargonekar, Eric Shu, and Natasha Rishi; and our savvy business manager Irina Volanchansky.
In order for us to meet our goals and successfully complete the pilot this fall, we are seeking interested investors and advisors as well as supporting volunteers to help develop the business even further. To learn more please contact [email protected].
Hatch International’s Solaii team’s goal is to distribute solar lamps and empower women by helping them start their own social enterprises, which will increase the economic potential of their community while also reducing the environmental and human health hazards of kerosene lighting. Learn more about the Solaii project by reading how we are Redefining the 6 p.m Hour.
This blog post was written by Chandni Shah, Co-founder and Solaii Director for Hatch International.