Partner Spotlight: Energy 4 Impact

Across East Africa, Energy 4 Impact through the Women Integration into Renewable Energy (WIRE) Value Chains program is creating new opportunities for women in rural areas.

The majority of the rural and peri-urban population in East Africa depends on traditional fuels, mainly firewood and charcoal for cooking and heating, and kerosene for lighting. Excessive burning of firewood and charcoal affects the climate, environment and human health, particularly children and women who use these fuels in the household and small-scale enterprises.

GreenChar carbonized chracoal being sold in the slum of Kibera, Nairobi, Kenya.

Energy 4 Impact, a non-profit organization working with local businesses to extend access to energy in Africa has established the Women Integration into Renewable Energy (WIRE) Value Chains programme to support women energy entrepreneurs in rural Kenya and Tanzania by providing them with business and technology training and mentorship, and supporting them to access financing and market opportunities.

Established with support from the US Department of State the WIRE Programme is part of the Partnership on Women’s Entrepreneurship in Renewables (wPOWER) launched by the US Department of State in January 2013 to empower women clean energy entrepreneurs across East Africa, Nigeria and India to deliver clean energy access.

The initiative aims to provide 396,000 people with access to clean cooking and solar lighting products in Kenya and Tanzania, and create 400 jobs.

Implementation of the WIRE activities started in September, 2016 and to-date over 400 potential women entrepreneurs have been identified in Kenya (Green Belt Movement) and Tanzania (Solar Sister) through contacts with wPOWER partners, local governments and other stakeholders. The vetting and recruitment of the entrepreneurs into the programme has been completed and currently the implementation teams are conducting kick- off meetings and initial trainings and will start regular entrepreneurs mentoring and market development activities in March, 2017.

For further information please visit Energy 4 Impact’s website:  www.energy4impact.org