Regular Donor Report: Lubutu
Autumn 2016


Outside the towns and cities in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, only 1% of the population have access to electricity. That’s why kerosene lamps are found in almost every home. But they are inefficient, dangerous and expensive to run. In fact, buying kerosene can take up a quarter of a family’s income, crowding out essentials like school books and medicine.


The World Bank estimates that damage to health from breathing kerosene fumes is the equivalent of smoking two packets of cigarettes a day.

So finding a clean, affordable and safe source of light is a small but powerful step in improving the quality of life for people in rural communities. In the tropics, where the sun is strong for most of the day, the obvious answer is solar power. But for people earning just a couple of dollars per day, the cost of even the cheapest solar lanterns is often too much. Thanks to you, we’re aiming to provide every family in our Lubutu partnership with a solar lamp. Solar energy has multiple advantages such as reduced CO2 emissions and gives off no noxious fumes. The ability to light homes and villages safely at night means that children can do homework after dark and small businesses can stay open later in the evening.


A group of enterprising women in Lubutu is investing Cool Earth funds in building a solar mini-grid system that can power up to 300 watts. As well as using the power generated for community meeting houses, the women will charge customers a small fee to use connected charging points. The income generated will enable the women to support their families and feel empowered to turn down offers from loggers.

The sun can do so much more than give light.

Healthy families, healthy forest

What has a bar of soap got to do with the conservation of forest?

Humans are as much a part of the forest ecosystem as any other species. The villages that you support have lived in harmony with the rainforest for countless generations.

Cool Earth knows that supporting the communities that live in the forest is by far the most effective way of protecting it for the long-term.

The greatest cause of infant mortality and sickness in the communities we work with is diarrhoea caused by bacterial contamination. This can be reduced by 90% simply by washing hands with soap.

Thanks to you, we can provide simple, affordable health care to forest villages. This helps them to become stronger and puts them in a better position to generate sustainable incomes, and resist the temptation to accept money from loggers.

Healthy families mean healthy forest.

Lubutu girl smiling in Cool Earth's DRC Partnership

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Regular Donor Report: Lubutu <br /> Autumn 2016
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