Meg Cichon, Associate Editor, RenewableEnergyWorld.com
December 18, 2013 | 1 Comments
Typhoon Haiyan struck the Philippines one month ago, affecting nearly 12 million people and killing more than 6,000. Today, many people are still sitting in the dark and utilities say that some power plants may not be fully repaired for an entire year.
What better way to help victims than giving them the gift of light.
One Million Lights Philippines provides solar-powered lights to rural, off-grid communities, but the organization is now also shipping lights to Typhoon Haiyan victims. Established in 2010 by three high school students, One Million lights began shipping solar power to impoverished communities in the Philippines in 2011.
The organization hopes to curb climate change and lower energy expenses by helping communities switch from oil to solar. Today, hundreds of student volunteers have worked to ship more than 5,000 lights and impact more than 30,000 Filipinos.
Donate directly to the cause here, or even buy you own solar light — One Million Lights will send one light to the Philippines with each purchase.
“Without light, relief work stops. We are helping relief workers in disaster areas by equipping them with solar lights and charging.” The Solar Energy Foundation is also working to bring solar energy to rural Philippines, but it is now shifting its focus to relief support.
The Solar Energy Foundation is working with on-the-ground relief organizations in the hardest-hit areas of Typhoon Haiyan, starting in Tacloban, Ormoc, Iloilo, Roxas City, and Busuanga. The organization is providing solar-powered lighting, charging, and communication to support partner organizations that are trying to navigate the disaster and help bring Filipinos to safety. These relief organizations include: Red Cross, Peace and Equity Foundation, TaosPuso Foundation, Life Bank Foundation, Iloilo-CODE, CCT, and CARD.
WE CARE SOLAR is another organization working to aid relief efforts. A 2013 CNN Hero, founder Dr. Laura Stachel is bringing her “Solar Suitcases” to those in need of medical attention in the Philippines. Stachel originally created the kits to promote healthy, safe childbirth in rural communities.
The Solar Suitcase is a portable medical kit that includes LED lighting, a universal cell phone charger, battery charger, and outlets for 12-Volt DC devices – all of which is powered with its 40- or 80-Watt solar panels and a 12-amp-hour sealed lead-acid battery.
According to its website, Solar Suitcase features include:
Donate through the CNN Heroes website and Subaru will match donations dollar-for-dollar up to $25,000.
Solar Suitcase image: Doc Ted Esguerra preparing to bring a Solar Suitcase for humanitarian relief efforts in Kananga and Tacloban. Credit: The Solar Energy Foundation.