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Solar Power Education Boost For Gaza

3rd January, 2017

Improving the quality of life is about more than just providing the essentials like food, water, healthcare and shelter. The right to education is a universal entitlement and provides the key to progression in life and a platform for self-sufficiency.

In Gaza, Islamic Help has supported and is continuing to assist thousands of disadvantaged children and adults access that entitlement through a series of programmes ranging from nursery school provisions to improving university facilities.

Our latest project is also using sustainability to allow hundreds of children to continue their studies, by installing a solar power system at Dar AlFadelah school for orphans. The school, in Rafah in the Gaza strip, has 530 pupils and staff.

Their daily life has been disrupted by the blockade of the Gaza strip which has led to power cuts of up to 16 hours a day.

It has made not only the running of the school difficult, especially in winter, but forced it to bear extra costs because of the fuel needed to run generators.

The installation of solar panels to provide lighting will alleviate some of those burdens and allow children to continue their studies unhindered. The hybrid off-grid PV solar system with energy-saving LED lighting fixtures services the classrooms plus teachers’ rooms, labs and administration quarters.

With back-up batteries, it ensures lighting is available at all times. Among the benefits are:

• Green clean renewable energy
• A reduction in carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions up
• Annual saving of electricity bills and fuel bills
• Using LED lighting instead of traditional fluorescent lights results in energy savings of up to 60%
• The solar panels have a 25-year life span while the LED fixtures can last up to 30,000 hours

The project cost approximately £11,500 and was put out to tender, with the successful bidder chosen from a list of four. The problems included the lack of specialist companies dealing in solar system installations, the shortage of specialist equipment due to the blockade of the Gaza strip and the high prices of imported materials and taxes.

Despite the obstacles, the project has been successfully completed and handed over to the school, with staff also being trained to deal with the system in case of any unexpected faults.

It is only with your support that we can continue improving life for the people of Gaza. Donate today.