Greenlight Planet, a global leader in solar home energy solutions has created job opportunities for more than 2000 women in rural Kenya. This represents nearly 50% of the commission sales agents that sell and service the company’s Sun King solar products to the underserved communities in rural Kenya.
Operating the off-grid solar industry’s largest pay-as-you-go business, the company has created a network of over 5500 commission sales agents across sub-Saharan Africa. These ‘Sun King Energy Officers’ are most often customers who have turned into sales agents to make an additional income by selling and servicing Sun King products within their communities.
One of Greenlight Planet’s Sun King Energy Officers, Vaseria Wanjiru said, “I struggled to find a stable job for a long time before joining Sun King. As an Energy Officer, the additional income I am able to make helps me provide for my family’s needs. I am able to pay for my children’s school fees and give them a comfortable life. I receive tremendous support from my regional business manager, who always motivates me to aim higher.”
As mentioned in the Powering Jobs Census 2019, published by Power For All, women’s participation in the workforce is a critical issue for emerging economies. Women are more likely than men to be unemployed in most parts of the world. Across sub-Saharan Africa, the unemployment rate for women is 6.2% while for men it is 5.6%. Greenlight Planet delivers clean, affordable energy in rural Kenya thereby contributing to SDG7 as well as SDG 5 and SDG 8.
“Women are the cornerstones of any family, even for those with a responsible father figure. When you empower a woman, she impacts the lives of family members directly,” notes Mr. Muriuki, Business Development Director for Africa at Greenlight Planet, adding that they have been quick to adopt their off-grid power solutions.
The company is working with the International Finance Cooperation (IFC) to close gender gaps and increase women’s participation in the renewable energy sector under the Energy2Equal initiative.