Electricity has been the daily energy source of people for about 150 years. According to World Resources Institute in 2000, 27.2% of the world’s population did not have electricity in their homes. International Energy Agency points out that 80% of people living without electricity live in rural areas of the developing world, mainly in Sub-Saharan Africa, South and East Asia. In 2000, only 24.2% of the people living in Sub-Saharan Africa had electricity in their homes. 32% of the countries in this region have more than 90% of their homes without electricity. This includes Ethiopia, one of the least developed countries in the World in terms of energy, with an access to electricity percentage of 4.7.
The area is one of the focal points of the world’s biggest organizations, yet the lack of electricity in the area makes their job very difficult. Medical supplies to fight with deadly epidemics, and agricultural supplies to ease plantation and fight hunger spoil without refrigeration, existing lighting methods using kerosene result in child poisoning and are highly affected by the rising oil prices, community knowledge is weakened without communication devices, and clean and uncontaminated water is very hard to be reached without electric pumps. Lack of electricity at home decreases the quality of life, and efficiency of time and resources. Families that struggle surviving oversee the necessity of education. At Ethiopian schools the enrollment rate and attendance is low; class repetition and dropouts are very common.
It is crucial to raise the life quality in the rural areas of Ethiopia, where these difficulties hurt the most to avoid the excessive migration to the urban areas, where the improvements cannot satisfy the demands with the raising population as the rural citizens abandon interest in agriculture, which is a great part of Ethiopia’s economy.
Ethiovita is aiming to present a sustainable solution to the problems of everyday life that are caused by lack of electricity while creating a reason for children to stay in school.
The not-for-profit organization that supervises the research and development is Millennium Villages.