Shakti Empowerment Solution Pvt. Ltd – India

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  • Children in Uttar Pradesh, India, are benefitting from power and computers provided by IEEE Smart Vilage. Photo Courtesy of SES

  • The SES/ISV project is taking place in a remote portion of India.

  • Solar Charged Vehicle. Shakti Empowerment Solutions is using thier solar microgrid to charge an electric vehicle. the car can be used for local transportation and services. Photo courtesy of SES

  • Batteries and controller have arrived in Uttar pradesh. Photo courtesy of SES

  • Salespeople are employed by SES to inform potential customers of the benefits of reliable power. Photo courtesy of SES.

  • A rooftop installation of solar panels provides security and ease of maintenance. Photo courtesy of SES


PURPOSE

Shakti Empowerment Solutions Pvt Ltd (SES) is a social enterprise registered in India. It works in conjunction with its registered non-profit, United for Hope (UfH). Targeting the three pillars of IEEE Smart Village (ISV): Social Enterprise, Education and Access to Energy, SES works toward the empowerment of rural Indians. With support from ISV, SES develops projects that combine community education with entrepreneurial business opportunities. SES provides villagers in rural India with clean energy and education access through solar power connections. This multipronged model improves the living standards of the rural population. This leads to the sustainable development of rural India, thereby resulting in communities with opportunity and prosperity. The SES development model is achieved through collective efforts, with reliable and clean energy, economic stability, and education as constituting the foundation.

BACKGROUND

The rural poor in India are faced with a number of constraints that inhibit their quality of life. Measuring household welfare in rural India shows inadequate access to health, education, energy, income, and infrastructure. This is exacerbated by corruption and bad governance. SES works in Eastern Uttar Pradesh, one of India’s poorest regions. The combination of inadequate infrastructure, health and energy along with poor education traps the rural populace in a viscous cycle of poverty.

The national grid in the region is unreliable, only intermittently available for six hours daily. Most villagers rely on kerosene lanterns that are expensive, dangerous and hazardous to their health. Limited access to clean water is another major problem – villagers drink from shallow water wells contaminated with arsenic and other pollutants.

LEVERAGING

This pilot project implements the ISV agenda in marginalized districts of Northern India; it creates a blueprint for a scalable rollout. The solar energy enterprise provides electricity to households, small commercial beneficiaries and community resources such as a water purification plant. The education program provides classes in a community center with reliable electricity. The SES solar-powered “e-rickshaw” provides transportation to other villages and transport hubs, expanding villagers’ ability to reach nearby areas for work, education and commercial needs.

TEAM

The team is led by Tara McCartney, Founder & Director of United for Hope and Shakti Empowerment Solutions, and Vikas Malik, Co-Founder & Public Attorney at Haryana & Punjab High Court. Tara is an ex-corporate manager who specialized in bringing complex incubation projects to international markets. Since founding United for Hope, Tara has gained extensive experience in creating holistic development programs for rural transformation and using social enterprise for economic growth and societal wellbeing. Vikas uses his legal, political and administrative knowledge to support SES operations, financial and legal accountability and expansion of network. Gyanvardhan Govind Rao, Senior Project Manager, is responsible for day to day operations and execution of major projects. SES is supported by Saudi Arabian Solar Engineer Faisal Al Rashid and a team of professional Western volunteers. There are eight on the local team consisting of Project managers, a business development manager, teachers, project employees and domestic staff.

INITIAL & SUSTAINED IMPACT

After the pilot phase distributes solar energy to approximately 150 families, SES will utilize lessons learned and conduct a rollout of multiple operations across the entire district. The selection and training of a cadre of social entrepreneurs is critical to successful expansion. These individuals will be entrusted with managing the rollout of the project in their communities. SES will then transition to an organizational partner that oversees project expansion to additional villages across the region. Every phase of the solar project will be supported by educational and vocational training programs conducted at the SES Community Centre. The final goal is to create new markets and self- sustaining modern communities.

TIMELINE

SES, the commercial arm of United for Hope, was founded in 2016 to host the legal transactions for social enterprise. With ISV support in 2017, SES established their solar energy enterprise to provide the infrastructural and program needs for education. The presented pilot program will take one year, ending in late 2018.

Once the pilot phase is complete, SES will use best practices and scale to ten village in five years and transform 41 communities by 2027.


Shakti Empowerment Solution Pvt. Ltd (SES) and IEEE SV have established a plan to provide sustainable and inclusive programs in the remotest parts of Eastern Uttar Pradesh. The plan is multi-faceted including power, vocational training, small business enablement, and school networking. Power distribution uses both portable battery kits for rural households and small businesses and an AC distribution system for connections from the solar microgrid to the customers living within a close radius.
In April,, 2018, an upgrade to the 7.56 KW system to 18.9 KW peak capacity was completed along with the completion of the Community Center. This allowed expansion to 24 hour power production, more business connections, and an increase in the number of Portable Battery Kits that could be charged. The Community Center will be the home to adult education, after school comuter training, and women’s health seminars.

Specifications & Details

Specifications Technical Details
Location Tirmasahun, Kushinagar District, state of Uttar Pradesh, India
GPS Est. Latitude: 27.64461, Longitude: 84.15527
Power Generation Capacity 10kW per community installation – Solar
Number of Beneficiaries 2,500 pilot with 9,500 at full project deployment
Project Start November, 2017
Year Started
2018
Technology
PhotoVoltaic Systems, Educational Technology, Remote Communication, Solar Panel Control Systems
Villages
Tirmasahun, Kushinagar District, state of Uttar Pradesh, India