The use of kerosene for providing light in homes results in over one million deaths every year, in addition to countless burn injuries, respiratory illnesses, asphyxia, and visual impairment.
The Rotary Club of Huntsville, Texas, USA, recently joined forces with an Austin based non-profit organization called The Grid Earth Project to provide solar powered household lamps to the village of Gracie Rock, Belize.
Gracie Rock is a small village located on the banks of the Sibun River near the Pecarry Hills of Belize; its inhabitants have traditionally hunted and lived off the land. Many of the villagers use kerosene to light their homes.
Huntsville Rotarians adopted the village. Through working with The Grid Earth Project, the club has been able to provide solar powered lighting for every home, with the goal of decreasing deaths and injuries from kerosene accidents, and improving the quality of life of those previously dependent upon kerosene lamps.
Solar powered lighting provides a safer environment, decreases burns and suffocations, and provides educational opportunities for children. Studying and reading at night is very difficult by kerosene, which provides only a fraction of the amount of light recommended for reading. The solar powered lamps Grid Earth provides light up a 10 foot by 10 foot room.
The Huntsville club is proud to be part of this effort. Through international service projects, Rotary clubs and districts are meeting the humanitarian needs of people around the world. What is your club doing to reach those most in need?