- The Solar Cow project includes power banks in the shape of little milk bottles called ‘Power Milk’.
- These ‘Power Milk’ batteries are recharge from the ‘Power Cow’.
- The novel idea serves to transfer knowledge an encourage parents to send their kids to school.
Yolk Station, a South Korean solar energy company has come up with a novel idea to transfer knowledge on solar power and encourage kids to attend school. They have installed a solar-powered charging station in shape of a cow at Chemoril Primary School in rural Pokot, Kenya. The pilot project gives parents free electricity as an incentive for allowing their children to go school.
Over 150 million children around the world are forced into labour, more than half of which are from Africa, according to the International Labour Organization. Income from a child’s work is believed by some parents in developing countries to be crucial for the survival of their household. Most children work in fishing, forestry, livestock herding and aquaculture, while the rest work in quarrying and mining.
The Solar Cow project includes power banks in the shape of little milk bottles called “Power Milk” which is given to the children at Chemoril primary school. These ‘Power Milk’ batteries are recharge from the ‘Power Cow’.
Students come in the morning and charge their Power Milk through Solar Cow, so that after class, they go home with a fully charged power source that serves the entire household. Education is what takes place while they are waiting for Power Milk to be charged.
The little battery banks contain enough capacity to meet most needs for electricity for the average local household: charging cell phones and powering a flashlight, a radio, or other gadgets. By providing free access to the electricity, we in practice help families save up to 20 percent of their average monthly income that they’ve spent for electricity.
Furthermore, according to analysis of our preliminary project in Pokot, Kenya, it saves 4-6 hours of walking to the nearest charging station, which was previously one of their very limited means of getting access to electricity. The saving of such costs is used as financial compensation to parents for sending children to school instead of to a workplace.
Author: Bryan Groenendaal