Solaris Tanzania is supporting micro-entrepreneurs since its early days. 6 months ago, we structured a special programme co-designed with Accenture to mentor them with a greater efficiency. Currently, Solaris Tanzania supports 32 micro-entrepreneurs across the lake region of Tanzania (2 of them being women). Thanks to our technology and empowerment services, most of them are running phone charging and barbershop businesses which provide them with additional revenues.
Empowerment services consist of a monthly training session and follow up led by our senior Solaris Rafiki, Henry Mugomba, who is conducting individual and group training on Capital and Sales management, Marketing tactics, Record Keeping, etc. while making sure these entrepreneurs apply such concepts in their day-to-day activities.
50% the entrepreneurs who joined the programme so far have been using the technology for more than 9 months Thanks to the 15 hours (or more) of training and mentoring they have been offered, 30% of them have been able to significantly increase their turnover over the past few months.
On average, Solaris micro-entrepreneurs are able to generate enough turnover to cover the cost of the system (which allows their family to access free lighting at night while not using kerosene lamps anymore). The micro-entrepreneurs able diversify the energy services they offer to their community are the most profitable ones (doing both phone charging and barbershop services for instance).
Meet 3 of those courageous men and women below:
Tabitha Elias, our star business woman
Tabitha Elias is born to be an entrepreneur. She was an entrepreneur before subscribing to Solaris. She started as a farmer and saved money from harvests to get enough capital and open a small groceries shop using one section of her house. Once she met with one of our representatives in her village, she immediately identified the potential business outcomes of it and decided to add phone charging and barbershop activities to her grocery business. She is now providing electricity to about 10 clients per day on average. With her system that includes 8 lights, she is able to keep her business open at night some times and to light up her house for her kids during the rest of the evening.
Haile and Nimja Mungati, business is family
Haile Mungati is a Solaris entrepreneur for more than 10 months now, mostly offering phone charging services, he also uses the system to light his house as well. He is about to comply with half of the repayment his system by next month thanks to the turnover he is making with it.
Haile is the father of 4 children and by the extra revenue he has made, he also managed to support his son, Nimira Mungati to subscribe for 80 watts Solaris system and to become an entrepreneur himself in their village of Tunyenye. His son Nimira has chosen to start his phone charging business in addition to a barbershop and is doing very fine as well ever since. He is employing someone to help him with his business and can dedicate his remaining time to carry farming activities.
Josephat Mabano, our successful entrepreneur
Among other success stories, we have Josephat Mabano who is an entrepreneur in the village of Jasco. He is married and has 6 children depending on him to go to school well fed. With his phone charging business, he is able to charge up to 46 phones in the good days and as a result, he is now making more than 100 dollars per month, covering his Solaris leasing expenses and making a profit that he can use to feed his family or reinvest in the business.
Thanks to proper lighting at night and his ability to support his kids with the right materials (pen, ruler, mathematic set and table, etc.), his 6 children can study when required and thus are doing pretty well at school and report B grades on average.
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