April 2019: In the remote villages of Arunachal Pradesh in North East India, it takes the children about 2-8 hours of walking through the tough and slippery terrains of the mountains to reach the school in the nearest village. Such is the situation that these children, thirsting for knowledge, stay in the school premises during the week and head back home for the weekend.
However, the school is not very well equipped to function. Lack of electricity in the school has prevented the children from completing their work once the sun sets for the day. One can see them flashing their torch lights, running between their dorm, kitchen and bathrooms.
Batti is an initiative to provide basic lighting for North East India’s most remote inhabitants. By harnessing renewable energy sources – and connecting those in need with those willing to help – it strives for change that is sustainable.
The Batti Team has been working in this region for six years, lighting up villages in these hinterlands. During the years, they have installed lights in the surrounding villages from where these children come from.
A student group from the Technical University of Munich, Germany conducted a survey in the region to understand the requirement of electricity for the school and how it can be produced locally. After going back, they developed a model, which was capable of generating enough electricity to satisfy the basic power need of the school and surrounding homes as well.
We will use the power of the sun and flow of the water to generate electricity.
As per the study, we will need to generate approximately two kilowatt that will run the lights in the two dormitories, kitchen, bathrooms, toilets, pathways, and classrooms. In addition, they will be able to charge their torches and run basic appliances like the radio, computer, streetlights. During peak hour, power will also be supplied to the nearby 12 households.
This will be a community-run power system, which will collect a user fee from the households which will then be used to maintain or service the system.
To make this happen, we require an array of equipment like PV Panel, Battery, Micro Hydro-Turbine, Charge Controller, Streetlights, Distribution System, Control System, School Appliances and more.
The most challenging part of this programme is the logistics, as this area is only accessible by foot, which means we need to carry about 900 kgs of equipment through deep forest, narrow gorges, and thin bamboo bridges.
In total, this effort is going to cost us INR 9,17,000/-
We have been able to collect some funds, however, we are short of INR 3,50,000/-
We also intend to clean and paint the school, create a space to inspire children.
In turn, we will empower the community with the knowledge of generating their own electricity so that they can become self-sufficient with their power needs.
With your support, we will be able to complete the project and the children will have a surprise waiting for them when they resume their school after their summer vacation.
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