Cars instead of camels- Little Suns join a caravan from Brussels to Agadez

May 2018

Little Suns crop up in many places around the world,  but often the journey they embark on to get there is also remarkable! Currently, an initiative is underway, set up by three Tuareg friends living in Brussels and Paris to transport charitable donations, via a caravan, from Brussels to Agadez, their home town in Niger- and, thanks to Cosima Jentzsch and the team at FOLIO, Little Sun is going to be a part of it!

The idea behind the project is to honour the legacy of exchange, which has been a feature of life in the Sahara for centuries. Traders travel through the desert on camels not only to exchange goods and commodities, but also to exchange cultures, ideas and language. The three friends want to continue this tradition by forging a new path from North to South and highlighting the significance of their nomadic inheritance.  A convoy of more than ten vehicles will travel 5,000km, crossing five countries, before arriving at the final destination: Tidene Valley, 90km north of Agadez. Most of the valley’s inhabitants, a population of 16,000 people, do not have access to electricity.

FOLIO, an initiative created to enable an exchange and dialogue between North and South, using art as the medium of communication, wants to bring 250 Little Suns to children at schools in the area, to which the FOLIO team already has strong ties. With the help of the solar lamps, students and their families will be able to continue their daily activities after dark.

 

The Brussels-Agadez caravan is a lot more than a simple transport of humanitarian aid. It represents a symbolic exchange between Europe and Africa. FOLIO is offering workshops in Europe (Germany, Belgium and France) in which children can embark on an ‘imaginary journey’ across the Sahara, learning about nomadic tradition.

 

Additionally, the kids get to explore one of the most important features of life in the Sahara: the sun! Through experiments using colour and light, the kids learn about the awesome power of the sun and how solar energy can be used. They can make photograms, kaleidoscopes, build sundials and small solar panels and much more! This playful approach is something we here at Little Sun are also big believers of 🙂

You’d like to donate to the cause or host a workshop yourself? You can support the FOLIO initiative so they can buy more Little Suns for Niger by getting in touch with Cosima Jentzsch at cosimaj@gmx.de

The project’s creative approach and emphasis on connecting people across the world really resonates with us, as it is something Little Sun strongly believes in. Afterall, we are all #ConnectedByTheSun.

We wish this exciting adventure the best of luck and would like to thank Cosima and her team for helping us to spread solar love across the world.