Plan Liberia, an international non-governmental organization, has launched an electrification project in Voinjama, Lofa County, at a cost of over US$2 million.
The pilot project titled: “Light up Our Future”, is being implemented by Plan Liberia and co-implemented by the Volunteers to Support International Efforts to Develop Africa (VOSIEDA) with funding from the European Union (EU).
Speaking at the launch of the project in Voinjama recently, Plan Liberia Project Coordinator Orlando Kanswen said the objective of the project is to alleviate poverty in rural communities in Liberia through increased knowledge and access to affordable and sustainable renewable energy with focus on Lofa County.
Kanswen pointed out that the project, which started on July 1, 2015, will last up to June 30, 2017 and will be implemented in five communities in Voinjama and also in Quardu Gboni, Kolahun and Foya Statutory Districts.
The Plan Liberia Coordinator said the project will be implemented through a Mini-grid Solar Power Service in five isolated communities in Lofa to improve the health and educational sectors in those areas for better living conditions and increased livelihood opportunities for residents.
He named other activities under the project as training of Community Grid Management Teams (CGMTs) in each of the five project communities to manage the solar grid as well as the installation of community grid solar energy systems to provide electricity to schools, clinics and households.
Kanswen added that the project will also provide electricity to small businesses in the five communities and mount five solar-powered street lights in each of the targeted communities.
According to him, Plan Liberia will also sensitize communities on the health benefits and educational opportunities of renewable energy, train community residents about renewable energy and how to use it properly, as well as sensitize 250 students and 40 school administrators on the importance of renewable energy.
He added that Plan Liberia will construct 10 water tanks and taps with solar pumps in the five communities and train ten members of the Lofa County Youth Parliament (LCYP) to develop advocacy strategies on renewable energy.
In remarks, Lofa County District #3 Representative Clarence K. Massaquoi recounted the many contributions made by Plan Liberia to the health and education sectors of the county, noting that the project will boost the county’s economy.
Massaquoi assured the donors of the county leadership’s fullest support to ensure the successful implementation of the project.