The French NGO Électriciens sans frontières (Electricians without Borders) won the Zayed Energy Sustainability Award for its work in the Rohingya refugee camps in southern Bangladesh.
In Abu Dhabi, an international jury headed by the former president of Iceland, Ólafur Grímsson, chose the NGO from among 2,300 candidates and awarded him the prize of $ 600,000. His project “The Light for Rohingyas” consisted of teaching renewable energy and entrepreneurship to both Rohingya refugees and the citizens of Bangladesh.
During the training program, trainees were taught how to install and maintain energy and lighting supplies and were trained to be autonomous and launch their own businesses.
“Light for the Rohingyas” was implemented in partnership with Schneider Electric Group and the international NGO Friendship, which works with disadvantaged communities in Bangladesh, where lack of lighting can have dangerous consequences, especially for women and children.
The project improved the living conditions of 8,000 of almost one million Rohingya living in refugee camps after fleeing religious persecution in Rakhine state in Myanmar since 2017.
Electricians without borders President Hervé Gouyet said: “Our project” Light for the Rohingyas “responds to the vital needs of Rohingya refugees through a renewable energy and entrepreneurship training program.”
“The approach we adopt in this project could be exported to other camps. We are particularly proud to have received the Zayed Prize, which represents the international recognition of our humanitarian action. ”
The Zayed Sustainability Award was established in 2008 by Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, to sponsor innovation in the field of sustainability.