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Richenda’s Message – September 2015 | Energy Access Practitioner Network

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Richenda’s Message – September 2015

Dear Friends,

This is a month for many congratulations. First we want to congratulate Rachel Kyte, recently named the incoming CEO of Sustainable Energy for All. Rachel’s appointment comes at a time of transition to the development of a new international non-profit organization, the Sustainable Energy for All Partnership, based in Vienna, Austria. Her career has spanned the top levels of multilateral development, private sector financing, and non-profit leadership, focusing on a host of climate change and environmental issues. Energy access is by no means new to her, and we welcome her leadership and engagement with the many stakeholders in SE4All in driving the changes still needed to support the many development benefits sustainable electrification brings to households, communities and countries in health, agriculture, water, income, gender and environment and beyond.

Congratulations also to the finalists and winner of UNDESA’s first “Powering the Future We Want” award, which included several members of the network. Finalists included the Solar Electric Light Fund, supporting innovative agricultural work in Benin using solar drip irrigation, and Solar Aid, which is well known across East Africa for its development of major new distribution channels to bring solar lighting to homes and communities for the first time. Special congratulations go to We Care Solar, its founders Dr. Laura Stachel and Hal Aronson and their team, for “shining a light” on the need for and utility of solar powered lighting and power solutions for health clinics in developing countries, especially during humanitarian emergencies, who won the prize of US$1million to support their work.

At UNF we are also building out our work globally and especially in Africa on health clinic electrification, under the auspices of SE4ALL’s Energy for Women’s and Children’s Health initiative, which we co-lead with WHO and UN Women. In partnership with several donor governments we are focusing on promoting decentralized renewable energy solutions, particularly focusing on maternal and neonatal care, within the context of holistic electrification, and ensuring sustainability of solutions over time. We have just released a request for Expressions of Interest (see below) for the installation of solar systems in a range of health facilities in Ghana, Malawi and Uganda, and invite responses from suitably qualified and experienced members of the network.

Warm regards,
Richenda's signature
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Richenda Van Leeuwen
Executive Director, Energy Access, United Nations Foundation
@VanLeeuwenR