Providing Fair Opportunities for Everyone to Study by Donating Lanterns (Philippines)

May 25, 2023

Recipients and PMPC members

Through our “100 Thousand Solar Lanterns Project,” between 2013 and 2018 the Panasonic Group provided more than 100,000 lanterns to 30 countries and regions, including in Asia and Africa. However, it is believed that more than 600 million people still live in off-grid areas. Building on the momentum and passion from the Lanterns Project, Panasonic launched “LIGHT UP THE FUTURE Project” for off-grid areas. This initiative aims to bring light and power to areas without electricity supply, creating opportunities for “education,” “health” and “increased income,” helping to build a society free from poverty.
In conjunction with Panasonic Manufacturing Philippines Corporation (PMPC), we recently donated 500 solar lanterns to people in off-grid areas in Philippines.

The donations were made to two NGOs active in Manila, capital of the Philippines.
The first is the Angat Kabataan Volunteer Group, which aims to empower the youth sector by promoting involvement in social issues. The group believes that in order to do so, all efforts should be done to assist their members and their communities complete their senior high school education specially in the areas where electricity is not yet available. On December 9, PMPC hand delivered 200 solar lanterns to the group in the Brgy Sta Ana district in the Taytay Municipality of greater Manila. Angat Kabataan distributed the lanterns to households without access to electricity - especially those with children in school - as well as to night time mobile vendors, farmers, and fishermen.

People waiting to receive the lanterns
PMPC and Angat Kabataan handing out the lanterns

The second is Our Lady of Light Parish, which is working toward the development of sustainable means of livelihood among jobless housewives who have taken the opportunity to operate small stores through government small capital grants this Christmas season. All that is needed to provide are the solar lanterns to light their shops during night market. On December 12, dignitaries including PMPC President Yasushi Kondo attended the presentation of 300 solar lanterns at the Parish church in the Municipality of Cainta of greater Manila. These lanterns were given out to residents of mountainous areas who have limited access to lights. The recipients quickly went home and installed the lanterns on their house ceilings. Seeing the lantern light in his home for the first time, one man was filled with joy and surprise. Paolo, priest of the Our Lady of Light Parish noted that “We would like to express our gratitude to Panasonic for extending this help to our less fortunate communities. You have been the hands of God that will touch the lives of these people who will give light to their homes who are not yet reached by the electronic companies here in the Philippines. It will be a great help for them to have these solar lanterns to light their homes and to be able to do activities during the night. It will be a great help to their livelihoods.”
In addition, PMPC Director Mr. Atsushi Kozuma commented “Solar lantern is quite a strong tool so that we are able to provide the equality of opportunity. There are so many people who have the will to study and try to improve the quality of life. Unfortunately due to some constraints they cannot achieve this but with this tool and also through our activity we assure that this solar lanterns project will be able to contribute to improving those quality of life through providing the equality of opportunity.”

Members of the PMPC and Our Lady of Light Parish
Installing a lantern indoors for the first time

Replacing kerosene lamps with solar lanterns brings many benefits in terms of “education,” “health” and “increased income.” In terms of “education,” children are able to study for a further 1-3 hours at night. For “health,” 10-20 fewer people each year suffer respiratory illnesses. Finally, “increased income” is achieved by saving 6,000 to 8,000 pesos per month on kerosene and earning 20% more by working at night. All of these benefits help people to escape from poverty.

Based on our mission of realizing a “sustainable and inclusive society,” the Panasonic Group will continue to provide light to people in regions without access to electricity.

Movies about the solar lanterns donation