Power Up Gambia, founded in 2006 by 21-year old Kathryn Cunningham has successfully raised US$300,000. This marks a big milestone on the journey of Kathryn and her team to help staff of the Sulayman Junkung General Hospital realize their dream of working with full-time electricity. "Dear Friends of Power Up Gambia," she wrote in an email to us on Tuesday:
...through your ongoing support, we have reached our original goal of $300,000! THANK YOU for all of efforts, support, and encouragement. With these funds, we can sign the contract to initiate the solar installation. If all goes well, the panels should be installed by early September (fingers crossed!). I will be sure to send out pictures of the panels as soon as we are able to get them. This is a great moment for PUG and for the Sulayman Junkung General Hospital!
Inspired by this success -- and the profound need for electricity at many healthcare facilities in the Gambia beyond the Sulayman Junkung General Hospital -- the Power Up Gambia Board and Kathryn have decided to continue their efforts to provide solar energy to hospitals and clinics throughout the country. The new phase will begin with the 9 satellite clinics of the hospital, and PUG "...would appreciate your ongoing support as we begin our next phase."
The amazing Kathryn has also been nominated for the "Do Something Award, the new addition to the Teen Choice Awards which will air on FOX, August 4th:"
The Do Something Awards recognize "amazing young people - seriously amazing young people. Nine finalists - who saw a problem in the world and then tackled it are eligible to win $100,000 for their cause through the Do Something Award." Only teenagers can vote for the finalists at www.teenchoiceawards.com (go to the "Do Something" tab). Teens can vote EVERY DAY between now and August 1st. Please ask all of your teenage friends to vote!!!! There is also a facebook group called "Power Up Gambia at the Teen Choice Awards" that they can join.
If you are not a teenager - you can still help by printing a poster (Download PUGPoster.pdf) and hang it up at work, libraries, gyms, coffee shops, etc. Susan Scott, a friend of PUG and member of its Education Committee, has kindly composed a press release that you can forward to any publication that might be interested in helping (Download PUGPressRelease.doc ).