Christmas present 2014: renewable electricity to Mitandi

Our Christmas present in 2014 is a contribution towards building a solar power plant in the village of Mitandi in Uganda.

In Uganda, 90% of the inhabitants live in the countryside, and like many other developing countries, they do not have electricity. The Mitandi village is located at 1,800 metres in the Rwenzori mountains close to the border of Kongo.

People in this area use polluting kerosene lamps, candles, diesel generators, gas and torches to have some electricity and lightning. Mitandi Health Centre has access to some solar power, but needs much more in order to improve its health services to the community. The school has a great need for stable, clean electricity.

ECOHZ is committed to “changing energy behaviour” and contributing to a swift transition from fossil to renewable energy. It makes sense to support the building of a solar plant. A solar plant will provide stable clean electricity and make a world of a difference for the inhabitants in the village, the school children and the operation of the Health Centre.

ECOHZ has earlier given financial support to solar panels at the Health Clinic of Mitandi (read more here) but the output is not enough to provide a stable supply of electricity. This year our Christmas present is a contribution to a new and larger solar power plant they plan to build in the village of Mitandi. We hope you share some of our enthusiasm for doing something good for people who really need it.

The new solar power plant will:

  • Provide the school with electricity for lightning, computers, printers and charging of mobiles
  • Provide the Health Centre with stable electricity for lightning, computers in offices and give more sterilized equipment and safer births
  • Give many families a new way of living. The houses will get stable lightning and they will improve their health by avoiding toxic gases from the kerosene lamps

Mitandi 1

How the solar power plant in Mitandi will work:

 

Mitandi 3

 

In Kayanja village near Mitandi they have built a similar solar plant with great success.

The people of Mitandi will volunteer in the construction of the solar power plant and electricity will be bought to competitive prices; lower prices than use of kerosene and diesel.

Tore and Vigdis Oldebråten from Norway have a long experience with projects in developing countries and have over  the last years worked voluntarily to improve the Health Centre and the school at Mitandi. Local ownership and commitment is fundamental: The local community is represented by a project committee who decides how to run the projects. The overall goal is to improve health services and education for as many people as possible in the mountain area.

Tore and Vigdis have managed to live at Mitandi by renting out guest houses for accomodation. Many people who have helped out with the projects have visited Mitandi and seen the projects. Mitandi is the perfect starting point for mountain walks, chimpanzee trekking and safari in Queen Elizabeth National Park. Mitandi is a quiet place with stunningly beautiful nature far away from “the main tourist tracks”. Link to activities

The ECOHZ team would like to thank you for your cooperation in 2014, and wish you all the best in the new year.

We wish you a merry Christmas and a happy new year!

Warm Christmas greetings from ECOHZ

Arne Olav, Arne, Birgit, Eyrun, Heidi, Janne, John, Kjetil, Leif, Line, Nikolai, Preben & Tom