Helping Millions Make a Brighter, Safer Future
Sam Goldman and Ned Tozun, d.light
Can you imagine putting your family’s lives at risk every day just by cooking or trying to stay warm? That’s the reality for 90 percent of rural households in developing countries, who use kerosene, candles or wood fuels for indoor cooking, heating and lighting—the chief cause of uncontrolled fires that result in injuries and death in developing nations. In India alone, 2.5 million people, at least 350,000 of whom are children, suffer from severe burns each year, most of which are caused by kerosene lamps.*
SVN members Sam Goldman and Ned Tozun lead d.light, a triple-bottom- line international consumer products company (and 2009 SVN Innovation Award winner) that has improved the quality of life for three million people by replacing dim, dangerous and expensive kerosene lanterns and candles with solar lights.
As part of its ambitious goal to help 100 million people by 2020, d.light is supporting the “Right to Safe Light” Campaign in Tanzania, where 98 percent of households lack access to grid electricity. After a 2009 school fire killed a dozen students, a national outcry erupted about the dangers of fuel-based lighting. d.light responded with plans to provide solar lighting to every student across the country. In just six months, it has sold high-quality, extremely affordable solar lanterns to over 48,000 students in more than 1,100 schools across the country.
“Having bright, reliable lighting empowers families to rise out of poverty by increasing household income, expanding education opportunities, and improving health and safety,” said Ned Tozun, the company’s president, founder and director.
* statistics courtesy of the Solar Electric Light Fund, http://self.org