Improve women’s access to renewable energies

The local Malawi-based company Wala also received funding from the Access Efficiency Research and Development Fund. The Wala project will pilot a holistic support solution that will distribute high quality solar irrigation equipment to smallholder farmers in Malawi. It will also help farmers access soft loans from local cooperatives for agricultural inputs and solar irrigation equipment.

Wala will provide training to ensure farmers are confident in using and maintaining the irrigation system. The organization will also teach good agricultural practices and new business skills, helping farmers increase their yields and incomes.

Speaking to Efficiency for Access, Wala Founder and CEO Priscilla Sani-Chimwele offered her advice to other women considering careers in energy access. She said, “There is nothing that a woman cannot do. Although energy may seem very technical, you don’t have to be an expert to work in the sector. My experience is project design, management and strategy and I work with technical experts.

“That being said, it is important to equip yourself with the right tools and to train yourself. There are many free online courses that will give you the skills you need to be successful. It also helps you identify gaps and what you can add to the industry.

“You will be surprised how many people are willing to work with you, partnerships are very important. Now, whenever there is a need, we collaborate and pool our resources.

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Header image credit: Shell Foundation

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