« Where there is light, there is LIFE », said a wise men met during this mission.
This first mission to Guinea, in the Kankan region, Mandiana prefecture, took place in 3 stages.
It is in the small village of Gbillin (900 inhabitants), about 15 km from any roads suitable for motorized vehicles, that our volunteers first dropped their luggages and tool bags. The program : electrify the health clinic with photovoltaic panels and install a fridge, to keep vaccines and medicines. The village’s primary school also received the same type of equipment, allowing evening classes and catch-up classes. In fact, one of the first students of the school who had completed his studies at university. A very symbolic moment !
With this experience, the team performed similar missions in record time and always in a good mood in 2 neighboring villages, Loïla (3900 inhabitants) and Faranindoun (8447 inhabitants), each building bringing its share of surprises and technical specificities.
In the evening, the women sang and danced, to the sound of calabashes and djembes, in front of the health clinic, happy to be treated and give birth in better conditions.
A big thanks to the residents of Gbillin, Loïla and Faranindoun for their help in carrying out these projects and for their generous welcome. Thank you Dramane K., electrician in Kankan and our guide and translator on site. Thank you Dominique K., Marcel B., Geoffroy R. and Sylvia B. for their dedication on the field and thank you Roland R. for the good follow-up of the project.
The reward of our volunteers can be seen in the eyes of the children who are celebrating them at the inauguration of the installation by the authorities!
A few kilometers from Ahero and Kisumu, the third largest city in Kenya, on Lake Victoria, the Ayeweyo primary school, threatened with ruin and having lost the approval of the Kenyan state, is rebuilt thanks vzw Kitanda from Brugges and the kenian NGO Ebenezer.
Energy Assistance is then requested to feed by 2 kWc of photovoltaic panels, class lighting and administrative premises, PC’s, a fridge and outdoor security lighting.
After an in-depth study of the file by Georges Buxin (ex-Tractebel), Roland Rosseel (ex-Electrabel) took over the project an the organization of the mission en is confronted with numerous difficulties bound to the new Kenyan rules concerning the customs clearance of thematérael, After a year lost to getting in order, the material finally arrives at destination via Mombasa.
Despite the usual hazards (material to be bought locally, reality different from plans, …), the mission on the field is conducted quicly and efficiently. Another great achievement of Energy Assistance, duly thanked and congratulated by Kitanda.
Volunteers: Frederik Claerhout (Cofely), Pawel Jedrych (Cofely), Tom Detavernier (Electrabel) and with the effective help of Ebenezer volunteers
Project leaders: Roland Rosseel
Last March in Lodja, Sankuru province, RDC, Energy Assistance volunteers raised a new challenge: two weeks of work, more than 2000 m of laid cables, 21 solar panels installed, 24 batteries and an inverter placed in a secure room and 50 classes equipped with LED lighting, switches and sockets.
It’s more than 300 children from preschool, primary and secondary schools will be able to benefit from this new power plant. In addition, the School of Mums could has been able to open in the evening and evening classes in computer science started. No doubt that Pastor Pierre-Albert Ngueliele is already overflowing with future educational projects.
The health Center has also benefited from these facilities, to the great satisfaction of Dr. Jean Reynders.
Volunteers : Christoph Heymann, Patrick Thiry, Thierry Delculée and Léon Charlier
Project managers: Léon Charlier
The foundation ‘GiveThe Children of MPongwe a Future’ (GCMF, see www.mpongwe.nl) has built the George Korsten Vocational Training Center in MPongwe. The centre enables local students to get a degree in organic farming, bricklaying or carpentry.
Once completed, the centre can host up to 500 students. GCMF called on Energy Assistance to assist in the design, planning and installation of the entire electricity system from the nearby Medium Voltage line up to the sockets and lighting in the building.
Throughout 2017, EA and GCMF made an inventory of the skills and a project plan was made which involved the EA volunteers, one subcontractor, a senior electrician in Zambia, 6 local students and 20 local worksmen.
During this two-week mission mission, the EA volunteers and the local workforce finalized the connection to the Medium Voltage grid, commissioned the MV/LV transformer and equipped rooms with sockets, inside- and outside lighting.
Volunteers on the field : Marcel Didden , Steff De Coster and Paul Heremans
Two volunteers of Energy Assistance accompanied by Rik Neirynk (Artsen zonder Vakantie) spent two weeks of their holidays to achieve this electrification project in Katako Kombe, in the Democratic Republic of Congo (Sankuru province). The objective was to secure the supply of electricity for the operating room of the hospital with 4 kWp photovoltaic panels and storage batteries.
This region of central DRC is difficult to access. The equipment has been procured in Belgium and transported by cargo ship to Kinshasa. From there, it had to travel 1,300 kilometers on the river and finally by truck. The volunteers, after a long journey of 3 days (2 flights and 6 hours drive on tracks in the savannah and the rainforest), they arrived safely and ready to get to work.
Despite the usual technical difficulties and the adverse weather conditions (over 40°C during the day and storms in the evening) and thanks to the help of local technicians, the works have progressed at good pace.
After 8 days, the installation operates to the delight of the medical staff, the hospital patients and all the villagers.
Volunteers : Steff De Coster (Cofely Fabricom),Jelle Christiaens (GEM ENGIE)
Project Leaders :Benoît Braeckman en Roland Rosseel (gepensioneerden Electrabel)
This project, in the proximity of M’Bour, about 90 km South of Dakar, consisted of the installation of a solar panel kit producing 2400 Wp. This installation produces and delivers electricity to a grammar school comprising no less than 650 pupils from the 1st to the 6th grade; with on top three classes for the deaf and mute.
21 classes, an administrative building, a kitchen, a sick ward, a library, a toilet block for boys and girls and living quarters for the guard, in other words, 46 light fixtures and various sockets that require power.
Also a night/security lighting and an automatic well pump was installed, both powered by the solar panel produced electricity.
Our three volunteers assisted by Sadio, a local volunteer, needed all their strength and energy to successfully complete this mission, which was quite challenging due to the monsoon season.
Volunteers : Freddy Arzée (retired Cofely Fabricom),Dominique Thomas (ORES), Oriano Vergnanini (ENGIE Electrabel)
Project Leader : Freddy Arzée
In 2016, we made our first project in Belgium in favor of a home for children of the judge located a few hundred meters away from the ENGIE Tower in Brussels.
A mission of consultancy service for the renewal of the high-voltage cabin of La Fleche, Queen Marie – Henriette children’s home in Brussels led to an economy of several dozen thousands Euros.
On the other hand, the installation of an IT-cabled network the last two Saturdays of August by the volunteers’ team allows a secure management of critical data on children.
The first one but unfortunately probably not the last project in our own country where the access to the energy can raise a problem.
Volunteers : Jacques Tilquin, Nicolas Coppée, Steve Begasse, Olivier De Ridder(ENGIE Cofely Services), Olivier Debaets (Sibelga), José Béroudia (ORES)
Project Leader : Jacques Tilquin
In 2015, Energy Assistance asbl-vzw and ENGIE Asia Pacific worked together to renovate the electrical installation of a school that welcomes visually impaired children in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia.
This year, a second project concerned the hearing impaired children school. The opportunity for two Energy Assistance volunteers, Jean-Paul Vanherck (Technilift – ENGIE Cofey subsidiary) and Amy Li Jing (ENGIE China) to work at the renovation of the electrical installation. The works included the installation of new electrical boards, cabling, earthing & some lighting. A team of three local volunteers of Ulaanbaatar coordinated by Myagmar Erdenetugs “Tugsuu” (ENGIE Mongolia) has also contributed to the success of this project.
The electrical renovation was urgent as the school set up in the year’s 80 was facing to safety issues.
As last year, part the financing of the project was covered by the Energy Assistance 2015 greeting cards’ sales. This operation wouldn’t have been possible without the help of volunteers and the support of ENGIE Tractebel Engineering.
Thanks also to ENGIE Mongolia which help us in all the logistical Issues on place and especially to Tugsuu.
Volunteers : Jean-Paul Vanherck (Technilift – Subsidiary of ENGIE Cofely), Amy Li Jing (ENGIE China)
Project Leader : Miklos Almasy (ENGIE Africa)
In 2014 and 2015 an Ebola epidemic raged through Western Africa. Sierra Leone was amongst the countries struck by the disaster.
Hence, the decision to put the application from “Eye for Salone” and “The Flemish Institute and Primary School” on hold and not to restart it before the end of 2015.
On their wish list : the installation of solar panels (3.0 kWc), batteries, a fridge and 2 computers for the new primary school and training centre in Waterloo, next door to the “Amputee and War Wounded Camp”, where victims of the 1991-2002 Civil War had found a home.
The project went very smoothly, thanks to the helpful locals, who welcomed and supported our two Energy Assistance volunteers during the entire duration.
Frank and Luc witness : “Beautiful weather, sometimes too hot, especially for the roof work. Luckily we had a cool breeze from time to time. The first computer lessons were really encouraging.The only fact they have to learn, is that the Belgian ‘Tricolours’ is not horizontal but vertical”.
A good start for the first intervention of EA in Sierra Leone.
Volunteers : Frank Anckaert (ENGIE Electrabel), Luc Brossé(ENGIE Electrabel)
Project Leader : Miklos Almasy (ENGIE Africa)
The mission managed by two Energy Assistance Volunteers had as target to electrify the day clinic of Mivakpo, situated about a hundred kilometers from the Lomé, the capital of Togo.
Energy Assistance’s action covered four different sites and aimed to secure and to improve the interventions of the medical staff (doctors, nurses) on the spot.
A full installation of 4 solar panels was put in place. The electricity produced by these panels, supplies the lighting in the delivery and the waiting room and foresees the sockets in the medical staff’s office of power. Another two panels are dedicated to powering the fridge, where vaccines and medications are kept.
At the same time, Energy Assistance volunteers, analysed the broken down panels of the orphanage and day clinic at Wli and the day clinic at Meduime. The team managed to replace the batteries and the faulty regulators.
During this stay, the efficient help and the lodging provided by Sylvia Roovers from the Joko Togo Association, were crucial to the succeeding of this multifold mission.
Volunteers : Jean Noel Marchand (Electrabel) and Roland Ronchain (Electrabel)
Project Leader : Willy Vanderelst (retired Laborelec)