Econet Wireless Zimbabwe Energize the Chain Initiative

Highlighting video about the success of Econet Wireless and Energize the Chain in delivering much needed vaccines to remote parts of Zimbabwe. See 'Zimbabwe Project' under 'News & Updates' for more details.

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Dear interested parties:

As background, the key problem is not the supply of vaccines per se, rather maintaining refrigeration (storage) before usage. The quandary is well known, and solving it has been the missing link in the delivery of vaccines to the world’s poorest.

The op-ed below, coauthored by Penn’s Harvey Rubin, offers a potential solution that could literally save hundreds of thousands of lives if well implemented: connect refrigerators (with batteries to accumulate energy during off-peak hours) to the growing cell networks. It provides a better power solution than competing alternatives (e.g., solar). The idea is catching on and has been endorsed by several groups.

Clean water, cold vaccines, cells = a simple way to save lives

The next step in the project is to investigate the GSM cell network in India, in particular, whether it can support refrigeration, and other infrastructure issues. If you would like to volunteer your expertise, help with some groundwork (e.g., investigate actual cell towers) or even help with the business plan, then do please let us know.

We're currently looking for help in the following areas:

  • Non-profit and website organization
  • Funding applications and research
  • Team leadership and corporate, governmental, and NGO communications
  • Refrigeration research
  • Telecom and finance activities

The Energize the Chain team