If you ask about Chepangs in Chitwan, people will probably tell you to go far behind the mountains. These areas lie far from development and people are compelled to lead hard lives. Lothar VDC is one of those remote areas which acts as a home to over 5027 Nepalese people of whom 4000 are highly marginalized Chepang people (Census 2011). The struggle has the civilization pushed back under margin of underdevelopment.
Lack of electricity is one of the major concerns in Lothar. It has affected series of socio-economic factors including education. To enhance child education by introducing Lothar community to efficient solar technology, ECCA provided Solar Tuki sets, mass charging as well as maintenance training to 4 villages of Lothar namely Lo-ling, Gundi, Cheuding and Kalitar. Students, teachers and parents of 4 schools gathered together on June 6, 2016. Each household received 2 tukis benefitting 292 households in total where as mass charging stations are kept at school as an motivating agenda for school attendance.
ECCA also provided 3 days long Solar tuki repair and maintenance training to 8 participants; 2 from each village. This will help them repair tukis themselves without having to travel far for its maintenance. As for the community, an innovative concept of micro-credit was brought to life. Local youths helped in making people understand the advantages of micro-credit finance which was also expected to provide some income to trained solar repairing technicians of the village.
ECCA camps held at each of the four schools simultaneously brought students a step closer to efficient use of solar tukis for improving their education and enhanced their knowledge on alternative energies.
“Although people enroll their children at schools, only an average of 50% attends school regularly. Drop out rate is high and we believe that solar tuki can be a milestone to change this.”
(ECCA thanks Unica Foundation and Shanti Griha for the support.)