The care packs, each with their own personal message and carefully filled by N1MS' employees, included a bucket, soap, a wash cloth and a Sun-e-light, the enhanced solar-powered lamp and mobile phone charger introduced to South Africa by N1MS.
"We created Sun-e-light for South Africans who have little or no access to electricity, as an ongoing corporate social investment project," said Philip Belamant, Managing Director of N1MS. "We heard that the students at Jon Kotlolo Primary School are often victims to power cuts, if they have electricity in their homes at all, and we hope that the Sun-e-lights will give them the light that they need to do their homework and study. Nelson Mandela, who we honoured with this pilot project, said that education is the greatest engine of personal development – and we want make it possible for these learners to achieve their full potential."
A Jon Kotolo School student, on receiving his Sun-e-light, excitedly remarked: "I'm now solar-powered! The light will help me when I'm studying and the mobile phone charger is awesome, I can stay in touch with friends!" A community member, Mama Mazibuko "You have no idea how much this will help my family, we have so many power cuts here that last for days, and we can now use the lamp to light up our house and charge our phones so I can call my family and know they are always safe."
The first edition of the Sun-e-light is a solar-powered lamp that can also be used as a torch and it also has a port that makes it possible to use it to charge mobile phones. The next generation Sun-e-light, available in the next few months, can be used as a Wi-Fi hotspot, offering users the ability to research online and experience the digital world, giving learners access to academic material, and school graduates access to job-searching portals, for example.
"The Sun-e-light is about so much more than just providing light, it's about providing accessibility and connectivity", says Belamant. "Sun-e-light gives learners the illumination and the access to information that they need to complete their education. We will be distributing the solar lamp at schools and tertiary educational facilities across South Africa in the coming months, in areas where learners do not have access to a consistent electricity supply."