Even in the beginning God said let there be light. Hence, light is very importance in our world. This is the reason every country and region in the planet makes electricity a priority. But unfortunately, as some people say, Nigeria seems to be asleep when God said let there be light. The nation is engulfed in light poverty with over 100 million Nigerians living in darkness entrenched in epileptic electricity or complete darkness.
DIAFA is an NGO focused on providing solutions which will make a significant difference in the lives and health of the very poor. It is a foundation created in the year 2005 by Dr Isaac Ayodele for the purpose of giving back to society that made him what he is today. Dr Isaac Ayodele himself has passed through very difficult terrain in life and therefore has the opportunity to know how excruciating it is to live far below poverty line, in complete darkness without electricity.
His philosophy is that those who have should give to those who don’t have adding that we can all give. Those who have plenty should give plenty. Those who have less should give little. If you give and I give the world will be better for all of us saying that there is enough to go round everybody all over. The problem is that resources are not well distributed. So, DIAFA is seeking to as much as possible take from the rich and give to the poor for a better tomorrow.
For a start we have identified low wattage SOLAR system and SOLAR SYSTEM IN KVA, HIGH POWER ENERGY SAVING BULBS THAT CAN LAST UP TO 50,000 HOURS and SOLAR BASED LED LIGHTING SYSTEM as part of the main means of improving life in rural communities and among the low income earners which either get intermittent electricity or no electricity at all. Solar panel provided charges the battery during daylight hours. The power stored in the battery runs the LED lamp throughout the night. In addition to all that DIAFA ensures that solar energy is provided for village and urban population with no electricity or with intermittent electricity.
In the course of its humanitarian activities through its pet project, Diafa Light Up Naija Initiative, DIAFA has reached out to a number of individuals and communities that direly need to be out of the shackles of the darkness in Lagos and beyond.
This simple solution makes a dramatic difference in the lives of many:
Women folk, who have to cook food at night and take care of small children, often in darkness don’t have to do so any more.
Young students now have availability of light provided for them to study at home in evening hours.
Men can continue their work in evening like running their shops, tailoring, watering of fields and hair salons. This also results in stoppage of the practice of using kerosene lamps and candles which are a great safety hazard.
Indeed there are three categories of people being targeted by DIAFA:
Those who can afford and are ready to pay the full amount directly.
Those who can only pay money in small installments
Those who just cannot pay as their daily income is so low that they can barely eat food.
The first category of people helps us to propagate the concept in the villages. Many people are initially skeptical whether the lighting system really works or whether it is a marketing trick. Once they see the light installed and working in their own village homes they get convinced.
It is at this point that the second category of people comes forward. The installment amount is decided based on the ability of the person to pay. There are no fixed rules for this. As of now no extra interest is being charged for payment in installments.
For the last category of people charity seems to be the only way. We are still trying to figure out if a really tiny installment mechanism can work out. However it is this category of people which are often left out and they really need the support.
Our objective is to reach out to these people and make a difference in their lives and give them hope. They are largely assisted by spirited individuals and philanthropies who provide them with whatever they can, be it solar lanterns, and various capacities of solar home or office systems.
It is a fact that we cannot solve all the electricity problems in Nigeria, but, we know that we can through our little effort provide motivation to government and philanthropies to make light available to the people. Some States in Nigeria are already lighting up their communities and this is encouraging. Though very much still need to be done, at least we are creating the awareness.