2020 started out with a bang for Pawame and Nairobi as a whole: the city that we are proud to have as our home was also host to over 1,250 off-grid solar professionals attending the Global Off-Grid Solar Forum and Expo hosted by GOGLA and the World Bank Group’s Lighting Global program. This biennial event is the most important gathering of the sector, giving a chance to learn about new developments, problem solve with peers, and of course meet the investors and donors who are keen to help the industry grow. One of the reports launched at the event is the 2020 Global Off-Grid Solar Market Trends Report — key reading for anyone with an interest in the sector!
While this was a global event with participants from over 75 countries, there was strong involvement from the Kenyan government. Highlighting the importance of the off-grid solar sector in meeting Kenyan national development objectives, the event was officially opened by the Kenyan president, H.E. Uhuru Kenyatta. The President took the opportunity to officially announce a joint commitment with the World Bank of $148 million under the Kenya Off-Grid Solar Access Project (KOSAP) to improve energy access in 14 counties with low electrification rates in Kenya. This announcement was a culmination of years of preparation by the government, the World Bank and the off-grid solar industry, and it was encouraging for everyone at the conference to see this initiative taking flight.
KOSAP will also be an important part of Pawame’s journey in the coming years. Our Corporate Development Director Laura Sundblad shared Pawame’s view on KOSAP and other public support programs as part of the panel discussion on public funding session. Our goal is to use this valuable support from the public sector to deepen and broaden our reach in some of the remote areas we already serve, as well as to venture even further to make sure that more families have access to clean, affordable energy.
When the official conference programming drew to a close, we were happy to be part of the field visit day to help conference participants see the industry up-close. We invited a group of cheerful visitors from the industry to our headquarters in Nairobi to learn more about employment in the off-grid solar sector — a hot topic that has been the subject of valuable research by GOGLA and Power for All.
We wanted to share our journey in creating meaningful employment and what we envision as the road ahead in further building a values-based, gender-inclusive work environment that delivers energy services at scale. The day was led by our Human Capital Manager, Nyambura Wahome, and it featured discussions and presentations from different Pawame employees who also fielded questions about day-to-day operations at a renewable energy company such as ours.
As an off-grid solar enterprise working with customers, agents, technicians, field staff and HQ staff, people are at the heart of our business. As such, not only do we provide customers with access to life changing products, but we foster a work environment that offers talented people a space to do fulfilling work and grow along with the company. If you are interested in seeing the opportunities we have available, take a look at our Workable page for current openings and be in touch!