In all his schooling years in Jhamwas, Haryana, Jatin, a Std VIII student had never seen electricity in his school. So when one day his school “lit up” it was a student’s heart that felt the glow. And this was possible because of Amazon’s renewable energy project - Rural Education and Development (READ) India initiative which is under the umbrella Amazon Cares program.
At Amazon, we strive to use our scale and our inventive culture to work on sustainability and in protecting our environment. To this end, Amazon piloted a renewable energy project through the READ India initiative and maximum impact was noted among the children of these two villages, who typically lacked access to digital resources for education because of the absence of electricity. Jatin was one of these school kids!
Lighting up a village
The READ India community centers at Haryana’s Sonepat and Jhamwas village have been provided with a 3KW-powered solar panel each. Two more such panels have also been installed in two of the schools in the locality of Jhamwas village. The panels have created a positive impact in the villages by improving living conditions through rural electrification, and by involving the youth in the uses and the advocacy of solar energy among their communities.
Changing students’ lives
Jatin, an 8th standard student at the Government School in Jhamwas Village, is delighted with the electricity at the village READ Center, as his school never had electricity nor any opportunity for him to access digital communications technology. Jatin has also been advertising the benefits of the use of solar lighting and its sustainable benefits. Residents of Jhamwas, as a result, have been increasingly adopting the idea of solar lighting for their homes.
Sunny, another young student of the Government School at Jhamwas, who has recently passed his higher secondary board examination, has also benefited from the solar lighting at the Center. Sunny has been preparing for the National Defence Academy examination after high school, and faced problems of electricity in his village. After the solar panel was placed at the READ Center, he became a regular at the library, coming to prepare for his examination and use the computer and internet to access information and study material. He says that the solar power in his village makes the village’s future very bright.
Building more READ centres
Our READ India project partners with villages to build community library and resource centers that offer sustainable opportunities to rural communities that lack the most basic resources. Today, nearly four lakh villagers have access to 25 established READ centers across the country. READ centers typically offer books, magazines and newspapers for village communities, among access to information and communications technology (ICT), Internet access (where available) and computer skills training. The solar-powered electrification has made it possible for children like Jatin and Sunny to access digital education resources at their READ Center.
At Amazon, we constantly seek new ways to build upon our best energy and environmental practices and use them to benefit our community.