Lighting-up communities: ZGF –VITALITE partnership
ZGF has embarked on an exciting new partnership with VITALITE Zambia that will help the organsiations supported by ZGF become more sustainable, while providing the communities they work with affordable and clean lighting solutions.
The concept addresses the very real challenges Zambian communities are experiencing. Almost 60% of Zambia’s population live in rural areas. Only 4% of these people have access to the electricity grid. Many of these people use kerosene to light their homes and firewood to cook. These communities are the very constituents and recipients of the policy engagement work carried out by ZGF’s Grant Partners.
The ZGF-VITALITE partnership marks an evolution in the way ZGF supports organisations and communities. The partnership has three complementary objectives:
To provide small community based organisations (CBOs) supported by ZGF with supplementary income to implement their activities.
To provide communities with clean, affordable lighting solutions.
To contribute to a sustainability fund for ZGF’s work that is not reliant on traditional donor funding.
Using the Grant-Partner Hub model, ZGF will support CBOs sustainability and address the pressing energy needs of the most energy-poor communities. In this model the organisation becomes a VITALITE agent, with support from ZGF who facilitates the training of the organisations’ staff by VITALITE. ZGF also provides start-up capital to allow the organisation to sell the units on a commission basis. The CBOs act as agents of ZGF and earn income to supplement their activities, while also allowing ZGF to cover the costs of being a VITALITE distributor.
The pilot project rolled out in Muchinga province in October 2016 with Development Organisation for People Empowerment (DOPE), a community based organisation located in Mpika.
ZGF plans to roll out the model to other provinces in early 2017. The goal is to literally light up communities through our support to Grant Partners and change peoples in lives in a very practical way.