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Refugee energy appeal

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The Ashden Award for Humanitarian Energy longlist has been announced – highlighting outstanding innovation that could one day impact millions of lives.

For many refugees, access to clean, affordable energy is all but impossible. This leaves them with fewer opportunities to stay healthy, earn a living and stay in touch with loved ones. Now, from a strong field of applicants, Ashden has identified four organisations whose work can be scaled up to address this challenge.

Until the end of this month, Ashden’s Humanitarian Energy Appeal is seeking donations in support of the award. These donations will support a direct grant to the eventual winner, as well as promotion of the solutions that can create radical change.

Refugees deserve to live with dignity – please make a donation and support this important cause.

Meet the longlist – four inspiring organisations

Energy Peace Partners and Nuru (joint application), Democratic Republic of Congo – a groundbreaking solar microgrid project, made possible by a pioneering finance mechanism. In a country badly affected by conflict, and with an electrification rate of just 15%, Nuru aims to bring electricity to 5 million people by 2024.

Kakuma Market Based Energy Access Project, Kenya – powerful support for grassroots clean energy entrepreneurs. This project is using a market-based approach to boost access to clean cookstoves and solar energy in one of the world’s largest refugee camps.

Solar Freeze, Kenya – a business offering solar-powered refrigeration in humanitarian settings. Their products play a key role in health clinics reaching thousands of refugees, and the company has also mentored and trained 100 young women in renewable energy skills.

Kube Energy, South Sudan/Somalia – this renewable energy services company uses innovative financing to help humanitarian agencies integrate renewable energy into their operations. Recent success includes commissioning three large solar power plants in South Sudan, replacing expensive and polluting diesel generators.

The hunt for innovation: insights from our awards team

Ellen Dobbs, Ashden’s International Development Manager, says: “Coronavirus has clearly had an enormous impact on the sector, making it more difficult to carry out work on the ground and putting funding under pressure. But we’ve been encouraged and inspired by the range of work out there, in particular the growing number of initiatives owned or operated by refugees themselves. Now it’s time to knock down the barriers that stop grassroots innovation scaling up.

“While our longlist is dominated by work in Africa, we uncovered promising projects in Yemen and Syria. We were pleased to find work delivering sustainable cooling and clean cooking – two areas where refugees face huge danger. And we were also glad to see innovation in finance models and market development. This can unlock the long-term, systemic shifts needed to create climate justice for refugees.”

Donate to the Ashden Humanitarian Energy Appeal

Discover the longlists for this year’s other international Ashden Awards

Photo: Kakuma Market Based Energy Access Project. Credit: SNV

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