VELUX Natural Light Solar Lamps Arrive in Africa
150 local sales agents trained in Senegal, Zimbabwe and Zambia.
Approximately one year after leading roof window manufacturer VELUX Group joined forces with social business Little Sun and NGO Plan International, launching a design competition to bring clean, sustainable light to Africa, the first solar lamps have now arrived on African soil.
The VELUX Natural Light International Design Competition received 172 proposals from 65 countries. A high-level jury of experts in the fields of architecture, art and design subsequently selected the winning design, by Mariana Arando and Luca Fondello of the University of Buenos Aires, Argentina. Their solar lamp design was inspired by the way light can bring people together.
The VELUX Group has so far produced and donated 14,500 of the solar-powered lamps, and 150 local sales agents are now being trained in how to sell the lamps in off-grid communities in Senegal, Zimbabwe and Zambia. The training combines workshops, roleplay, demonstrations, and group work.
«The first business training was very successful. It was well-attended and the future sales agents had a high interest in the product, convinced that the lamps would sell well. The agents were able to see that the Natural Light lamp can save their customers money. After two months of use, customers already save money compared to what they would spend on kerosene lamps. Having solar lamps means being independent from the electrical grid,» says Edius N. Makono, Alight Zimbabwe Trust (Plan Zimbabwe Alumni).