Mending Broken Lives Through Clean Energy Solutions

University of Waterloo

The project team at the University of Waterloo, along with its key partners, the University of California Berkeley and KIT, will provide affordable, equitable, and sustainable access to energy services to more than 500,000 individuals in refugee camps and proximate ‘educational-health-water' facilities using local renewable resources.

Last Updated: May 2023
Competition Participation
100 & Change logo
Climate Change & Environment
  • Kenya
  • Uganda
  • "Congo
  • Ethiopia
  • Myanmar
  • Economically disadvantaged people
  • Homeless people
  • People experiencing absolute poverty
  • 6. Clean water and sanitation
  • 7. Affordable and clean energy
  • 13. Climate action

Executive Summary

Lack of access to energy feeds a vicious cycle of poverty, especially for the billion-plus individuals without that access. We will focus on providing reliable energy services to touch half a million lives at refugee camps in Eastern Africa. "Off-grid" energy solutions will deliver clean, renewable energy for electricity, clean water, sanitation, and cooking and support to educational and health facilities, helping to mend these "broken" lives.

Our wider ambition is the accelerated deployment of clean energy solutions to reach more than a billion dispossessed and disenfranchised people across the globe. Our comprehensive technical plan combines reliable support of energy with community self-sufficiency and self-determination. Income for livelihood, skills development at all education levels, learning through play, and empowerment of women are central aspects of our proposal to create a promising path out of humanitarian crises. Energy access is the first step—a launchpad for education and a way out of extreme poverty.

Organization Details
Lead Organization

University of Waterloo

Organization Headquarters
Ontario, Canada
Organization ID
Number of Full-time Employees
> 1,000
Annual Operating Budget
$500.1 Million to 1 Billion

Charity, fund, non-governmental organization, religious institution, school, or other entity

Organizations may provide budget and employee data based on this proposal or the organization as a whole. For more information on this proposal or organization, please email us.

2022 & 2021 Swift Grant Awardee

University of Waterloo was selected as a 2021 Swift Grant awardee in partnership with Bard College. The Swift Grants fund provides small grants to Bold Solutions Network members for collaborative projects.

The two universities will expand their online Worldwide Teach-In on Climate and Justice in March to engage students and faculty members from all disciplines in underserved countries in Africa. The project aims to reach more than 200,000 students from over 100 countries to learn about climate change, climate solutions, and climate justice.


Despite COVID-19 restrictions and a shoestring budget, we have maintained the deployment of exchange students to participate in tangible projects in Africa and advanced the sharing of expertise to develop IoT-based solutions and smart energy networks through our respective partner organizations.

Help Fund Bold Solutions

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