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The Solar Mama Of Lutukina Village, Dreketi In Macuata

Fiji enjoys an abundance of sunshine which could be used to harness energy typically for rural communities that are not connected to the electricity grid. One of the best economical
13 Oct 2021 12:15
The Solar Mama Of Lutukina Village, Dreketi In Macuata
Three of the 29 homes in Lutukina Village that Mrs. Susu fitted eith solar panels and lights.

Fiji enjoys an abundance of sunshine which could be used to harness energy typically for rural communities that are not connected to the electricity grid.

One of the best economical solutions to remote rural electrification is the Solar Home Systems.

The Solar Mamas programme was implemented by the Ministry of Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation to effectively address the issues of climate change, access to electricity and the economic empowerment of women in our rural and remote communities.

 

PMU SEPO Mr. Bali interviews Ms. Susu and Beniame Rayawa in Lutukina Village, Macuata.

Mr. Bali, Senior Economic Planning Officer from the Poverty Monitoring Unit, interviews Ms. Susu and Beniame Rayawa in Lutukina Village, Macuata. Photo: Ministry of Women, Children & Poverty Allieviation.

 

In 2012, 10 rural grandmothers from Fiji were selected to undertake a solar engineering course at Barefoot College Tilonia, India with the objective to have them return to their communities as solar engineers.

The vision of this initiative is to empower illiterate rural women and their communities along a poverty alleviation development pathway through rural solar electrification.

Ms. Fulori Susu was one of the ten women selected for this programme and upon her return to her village in Lutukina, she managed to successfully install solar panels with three light bulbs in 29 homes.

 

Today, out of the 29 homes in the village, 25 homes still use these solar lights.

Ms. Susu who is now 51 years of age suffers from poor vision and has lost both limbs in her fight against diabetes.

She has managed to share the skills and knowledge learnt during her stint at the Barefoot College in India to the Lutukina Women’s Group Leader, Mrs. Tebwebwe Teai along with her children who are the current solar engineers in their Village and the Tikina of Dreketi.

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Upon being interviewed, the Turaga Ni Koro of Lutukina, Mr. Beniame Rayawa, expressed his appreciation to the Government for this initiative, which has not only been a source of income for Ms. Susu but has also improved the standard of living, and the electrification of homes within the Village.

The initiative has also allowed families to save a significant amount of money which would normally be spent on purchasing kerosene.

There has also been an improvement in the academic achievements of their children since they are able to study at home under the supervision of their parents, whilst the village women and girls are able to continue with mat weaving until the late hours of the evening.

Overall this programme has remarkably empowered the community in accessing proper lighting for their families.

 

Feedback: adi.sovasiga@fijisun.com.fj



Five Square diwali dhamaka 2021


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