Written by Sherry
Sunday, 20 May 2007 08:48
It's almost unimaginable for us who spend so much of our lives in contact with the media but nearly two billion people on the planet today do not have access to affordable artificial light at night.
Today's New York Times has a fascinating article (http://www.nytimes.com/2007/05/20/world/africa/
on a Houston oilman who spent 250,000 dollars of his own money to develop a inexpensive solar-powered flashlight which will last nearly 3 years between replacements of three 80 cent AA batteries.
“I find it hard sometimes to explain the scope of the problems in these camps with no light,” Mr. Bent said. “If you’re an environmentalist you think about it in terms of discarded batteries and coal and wood burning and kerosene smoke; if you’re a feminist you think of it in terms of security for women and preventing sexual abuse and violence; if you’re an educator you think about it in terms of helping children and adults study at night.”
As Peter Gatkuoth, a Sudanese refugee, wrote on “the importance of Solor.”
“In case of thief, we open our solor and the thief ran away,” he wrote. “If there is a sick person at night we will took him with the solor to health center.”
A shurta, or guard, who called himself just John, said, “I used the light to scare away wild animals.” Others said lights were hung above school desks for children and adults to study after the day’s work.
The flashlights usually sell for about $19.95 in American stores, but he has established a BoGo — for Buy One, Give One — program on his Web site, BoGoLight.com, where if you buy one flashlight for $25, he will buy and ship another one to Africa, and donate $1 to one of the aid groups he works with.
Check out BoGoLight - and consider becoming a light to the world in more than one way!