Solar panel in Msitu wa Tembo

Today Amalie and Fanny tell us their experience with the Solar Panel’s Project in Msitu wa Tembo, don’t miss it!!

As some of you may know, getting to Msitu is quite an adventure. From town we jump in the back of a truck, usually filled with sand, bags of onions and lots of locals! After about an hour, we arrive in the dusty, simple village of Msitu wa Tembo. Albane told us that getting to the Maasai tribe isn’t actually close by, but we of course didn’t know what to expect. With Sara, we get on a pikipiki (motor bike) and are on our way. Let’s just say that the ride may have been the scariest 20 minutes of our lives (very, very sandy).
The pikipiki brings us directly to Martha’s small house. Immediately we are welcomed by what seems like hundreds of little children. We enter the house made of mud and straw, to show the women how to use the solar panel. There is no electricity in the house, so it takes a couple of moments to adjust to the darkness. We explain how the solar panel is turned on and off and have the women show us multiple times that they can do it on their own. It was amazing to see the smiles of the women when the light turned on. We told the women we would come back with a poster to help advertise their small business (charging cell phones for 200 shillings) and jumped on the pikipiki back to the village center.

A week later we revisited Msitu, as this was our second time going to the tribe, we knew what to expect. That being said, it didn’t make the pikipiki ride any less terrifying! We get to the house and see that the solar panel has been set up on the roof, which was great. The women seem to have been using the solar panel every moment of the day since we brought it! They were playing radio, using a lamp and charging the local’s cell phones. There is a very warm, welcoming feel as soon as we enter Martha’s home. Mamma Martha and her family are funny, very nice people and we find it hard to leave. We are very happy with the results of the solar panel and are looking forward to seeing the progress in the next couple of weeks.

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