Chicago, IL (PRWEB) September 22, 2016
Recognizing the importance of versatile aid needed to respond to the endemic problem of AIDS in developing countries, LuminAID has announced a partnership with American Foundation for Children with AIDS (AFCA). The solar lighting startup will be showcasing the work of AFCA supporting children and families with AIDS in Africa. LuminAID will be focusing the efforts of their Give Light Get Light program on AFCA’s work in Kenya, Uganda, and Nepal. The LuminAID Give Light Get Light program allows customers to purchase a light for themselves while donating an additional light to a family in need.
Through a previous effort earlier this year, AFCA has already distributed 300 LuminAID lights to families across Nepal, Kenya, and Uganda. The range of use of the solar lights have shown the versatility of the lantern as well as the role of lighting in responding to a wide variety of unaddressed needs in poor communities. Children with limited resources are able to study after dark. Women and children use the lightweight solar lanterns to see their way to the latrine at night (which is often at a distance from the home), reporting improved sense of safety and security. Particularly for families struggling with poverty and the additional costs of caring for children with AIDS, solar lights help reduce costs associated with other light sources including paraffin, candles, and kerosene fuel. Further, solar lighting offers children and families a safe alternative to fire hazards from open flames and dangerous fumes produced by kerosene lanterns.
Describing the wide-ranging impact of safe and accessible solar light, Tanya Weaver of AFCA wrote “Our mission is to help children and their guardians become self-sufficient and for the children to stay in school. Obviously, having lights helps us with this because the children can study, even when it is dark in their home. For children to feel safe is another unspoken goal of ours...we want all children to feel safe and loved, whether going to the latrine or while lying in a hospital bed. The provision of renewable lights helps immensely, with no added cost to the family or clinic.” Medical workers have even reported that babies have been delivered safely by LuminAID light in otherwise dark clinics.
AFCA will be distributing LuminAID lights through their livelihood programs, humanitarian assistance, and medical program. In order to build upon this humanitarian work, LuminAID hopes to raise 150 additional donated lights through their Give Light Get Light program by the end of October. The AFCA provides an ideal network for accessing those who can benefit most from access to safe, affordable, and renewable light. The complementary goals of LuminAID and AFCA make an ideal humanitarian partnership for maximum positive impact on some of the world’s most vulnerable children.
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AFCA provides critical comprehensive services to infected and affected HIV+ children and their caregivers. AFCA programs are designed to be efficient, promoting self-reliance and sustainability. Since 2005, in collaboration with their in-country partners, AFCA has served tens of thousands of families in some of the most underserved and marginalized communities in Africa. Their areas of impact include: medical support, livelihoods, educational support and emergency relief.
LuminAID develops innovative, solar-powered products for humanitarian relief aid and outdoor recreation. The company’s first product, the LuminAID light, is a solar-powered, inflatable lamp that packs flat and inflates to create a lightweight, waterproof lantern suitable for outdoor recreation and emergency situations. Anna Stork and Andrea Sreshta, co-founders of the company, invented the inflatable solar lights in response to the 2010 earthquake in Haiti while they were graduate students at Columbia University. LuminAID lights have been sold to individuals in more than 70 different countries, and charitable projects with NGO partners have put more than 15,000 donated lights on-the-ground in more than 50 countries including Haiti, Nepal and the Philippines. LuminAID has further supplied its lights to Shelterbox, Doctors Without Borders, and several organizations in the United Nations for distribution on the ground after disasters and in refugee camps. LuminAID’s line of of compact solar lights are also available from many US retailers for outdoor recreation use, as well as online at luminaid.com and at http://www.amazon.com/luminaid. LuminAID was featured on ABC's Shark Tank, received offers from all five "sharks," and made a deal with the billionaire investor Mark Cuban in 2015.
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