According to UNHCR, there are 25.4 million refugees worldwide. Many of them live in refugee camps for years, where they lack access to basic energy services like fuel for cooking. Humanitarian organisations like UNHCR and world food programme are committed to improving the living conditions in such camps.
However, their financial resources are limited. When precarious living conditions persist for years, the development sector comes into play. While humanitarian organisations often hand out aid supplies for free in emergency situations, development partners mostly pursue a market-based approach. What are the advantages of such an approach and how can it assure that no one is left behind?
These questions will be discussed in a lab debate during the European Development Days (EDD) which will be held in Brussels, 18-19 June 2019 organised by SNV, the Energising Development (EnDev) programme and other implementing partners Practical Action and Hivos.
Sixtus Odumbe, SNV Renewable Energy Project Advisor, will join an EDD Lab debate entitled Energy for Refugees and Host communities which will include speakers from Practical Action, UNITAR and Chatham House to explore these issues. During this session, panelists will give an overview of the current situation, what the future holds and outline examples of inspiring market-based energy access initiatives.
During the discussion, speakers who have worked on the ground will exchange their experience on building energy market opportunities in refugee camps and discuss how the humanitarian and development sector can work together more closely.
SNV is currently implementing a market-based energy access project at Kakuma refugee camp in Kenya. The main objective of this project is to promote sustainable energy access for cooking and lighting by supporting clean energy entrepreneurs. To learn more, please watch this short video.
The European Development Days are a forum organised by the European Commission that is taking place annually in Brussels. The 2019 edition has the overall theme of “leave no one behind”.
The Lab debate, Energy for Refugees and Host Communities will take place on the 19 June at 9:00 – 10:15 in room D1.
A full list of speakers and more details can be found on the organiser's website.