Our Impact

Solar Sister entrepreneurs create a ripple effect impacting local women, their families, and the customers and communities who switch to using clean energy. Find out more about our data-driven approach and how we measure impact.

Independent research shows that Solar Sister’s model improves not only a woman’s household income, but also health, education and a woman’s status and control over resources.

Income allows women to contribute to household earnings, gain confidence, financial independence, and respect from their families, and play a larger role in household decision-making. From trainings and ongoing mentoring, entrepreneurs also gain important skills like marketing, financial management, communications and technical product knowledge. As a result, women gain confidence and the ability to serve as role models and change agents in their communities.

Families benefit from the better health and economic stability thanks to use of clean cookstoves and solar light. Children in particular benefit from reliable, bright lighting to study by at night. Over 90% of parents reported improvement in their children’s academic performance thanks to solar light. Women in particular also benefit from time savings – thanks to increased available lighting after dark. Those who use solar lights report 170% increase in light after sunset resulting in increased productivity. Families who switch to clean cookstoves significantly reduce the time of collecting wood, the cost of solid fuels, and by reducing smoke also improves the health of women and children in particular.

81
% Female
Entrepreneurs
1,786
People Reached
363,445
Products Sold
72,689
Regional Distribution Hubs
53
81
% Female
Entrepreneurs
2,344
People Reached
688,555
Products Sold
124,620
Regional Distribution Hubs
50
82
% Female
Entrepreneurs
2,935
People Reached
1,031,500
Products Sold
181,334
Regional Distribution Hubs
47
83
% Female
Entrepreneurs
3,554
People Reached
1,413,800
Products Sold
246,041
Regional Distribution Hubs
59
95
% Female
Entrepreneurs
10,000
People Reached
10,000,000
Products Sold
1,000,000
Countries Reached
5

Measuring Impact

globe-africa copy Created with Sketch. Demographics
We work with African women living in off-grid, often rural communities. The majority of our entrepreneurs are farmers, others are small business owners and professionals working in health and education sector. While our focus is on women, we also work with committed allies, our Solar Brothers!
75
% customers live in rural, last mile communities
83
% entrepreneurs are women
60
% entrepreneurs living on less than $2 a day
hands-helping Created with Sketch. Social Empowerment of Entrepreneurs
Our entrepreneurs report significant boosts in their own decision-making power, leadership skills and confidence, after joining up with Solar Sister.
92
% have decision making power over income earned
51
% hold community leadership roles
94
% report that someone views them as a role model
74
% are confident in public speaking
Group 8 Created with Sketch. Social Impact on Households
Our customers experience the difference a clean source of power makes to light their homes, charge their phones and cook their food efficiently and safely. The benefits are multiple - better health, improved education and more time.
91
% report improved child academic performance
67
% experienced health problems due to kerosene
1.7
more hours a day of light
suitcase Created with Sketch. Business Skills of Entrepreneurs
Our entrepreneurs participate in a year-long clean energy and business training curriculum delivered in their own communities. Ongoing mentoring helps them to apply the training and grow their businesses.
12
months training module on business skills
81
% entrepreneurs adopt skills to new businesses
482
sisterhoods (community-based training groups)
Group 9 Created with Sketch. Economic Empowerment of Entrepreneurs
By kickstarting clean energy businesses, our entrepreneurs both bring home extra income and put away some savings. This is the kind of resilience that grows healthy families.
53
$ average monthly sales of an entrepreneur
20
% increase in entrepreneur's monthly income
94
% entrepreneurs are able to save
61
average annual number of clean energy products sold
Group 8 Copy Created with Sketch. Economic Impact on Household
Our customers are also enterprising - many already run businesses or want to start businesses. Clean energy products benefit customers' businesses by bringing in extra income from increased hours of light and efficient energy.
24
% started new businesses, increasing monthly income by $52
38
% grew existing businesses, increasing monthly income by $28

Nigeria

Solar Sister Nigeria started operations in 2012.
People Reached 310,810
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Borno State

Entrepreneurs
10

Cross Rivers State

Entrepreneurs
30

Delta State

Entrepreneurs
6

Imo State

Entrepreneurs
61

Kaduna State

Entrepreneurs
22

Kano State

Entrepreneurs
26

Katsina State

Entrepreneurs
17

Kogi State

Entrepreneurs
0

Kwara State

Entrepreneurs
41

Lagos State

Entrepreneurs
16

Nassarawa State

Entrepreneurs
48

Ogun State

Entrepreneurs
29

Ondo State

Entrepreneurs
27

Rivers State

Entrepreneurs
27

Sokoto State

Entrepreneurs
33

Tanzania

Solar Sister Tanzania started operations in 2013.
People Reached 913,900
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Iringa

Entrepreneurs
67

Kilimanjaro

Entrepreneurs
135

Mara

Entrepreneurs
157

Mbeya

Entrepreneurs
33

Morogoro

Entrepreneurs
58

Mtwara

Entrepreneurs
26

Mwanza

Entrepreneurs
163

Shinyanga

Entrepreneurs
36

Simiyu

Entrepreneurs
27

Singida

Entrepreneurs
21

Tanga

Entrepreneurs
94

Uganda

Solar Sister started to work in Uganda in 2010 and closed operations in 2017.
People Reached 189,090