More than 10 million Filipinos do not have access to electricity. With the country being archipelagic, household communities in mountainous and far-flung islands are normally not grid-connected and depend heavily on kerosene lamps as a source of lighting. Two social enterprises being supported by New Energy Nexus Philippines are working towards helping these communities by providing access to clean energy through solar microgrids and home systems while capacity-building for livelihood improvements.
Solar Hope works with Indigenous People (IP) communities such as the Dumagats of Tanay, Rizal and the Badjaos in Batangas. Their startup started engaging with these communities in 2018 by providing solar lamps and working with the community to secure funds and donations for solar microgrids that the households can use for a more stable source of light and phone charging. The next phase is to provide solar hubs that will be a center for livelihood improvement (e.g. weaving using bamboo, agricultural products), championed by leaders from the IP community that Solar Hope will be training and supporting. The goal is to secure funds to be loaned to the beneficiary and work closely with the community champions to sustain the livelihood operations enough to pay back the loan and earn profit.