Dubai-Based Social Enterprise Shines Bright For Africa
Tuesday, November 25, 2014
It started with a plea to help 60,000 orphans in the company’s care.
The children, who were being looked after in Zimbabwean orphanages set up by the telecoms operator Econet Wireless, could not study at night because there was no power and lighting, and many were getting sick from breathing in the chemicals emitted from candles.
“The chairman’s wife came to me and said ‘look some of the kids are getting sick, some of the kids are struggling’,” says Marco Signorini, director at Econet Wireless UK and Econet Mobile.
“She said to me ‘surely there’s something you could do’.”
The company has offices around the world including in Hong Kong, so on one of Mr Signorini’s business trips he brought back five solar lights and showed them to some of Econet’s engineers, who then built their own version of them.
They made 10,000 solar lanterns and were inundated with inquiries.