Nov 22, 2023
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May 16, 2023
Sustainability / Blog Posts
Osaka, Japan – Panasonic Group (hereby Panasonic) donated 540 solar lanterns to households living in off-grid areas in the remote rural areas, located approximately 150 kilometers from Phnom Penh, in collaboration with Kadoma City, Kyoritsu Women’s University, the Panasonic Panthers, and others through the “LIGHT UP THE FUTURE”, the project that aims to deliver lights to off-grid areas.
A total of 130 people attended the ceremony, including Mr. Matsumoto, the head of Panasonic Asia Pacific Ptd. Ltd. Cambodia Branch, the governor of the local district, community representatives, as well as representatives and staff from our collaborative partners, the JELA Foundation and Life With Dignity, and local residents.
Panasonic’s solar lanterns are made with renewable energy technology, and they do not emit CO2. The donation of such sustainable solar lanterns is considered as the first step to promote children’s literacy and achievement by ensuring that they have opportunities to learn at night, improve health by reducing dependence on kerosene lamps that are the cause of respiratory diseases, and to create a positive household impact by reducing energy costs associated with buying kerosene, etc.
In a long run, the project aims to address the inherent poverty problems of off-grid areas in a variety of ways and to promote long-term structural changes through the creation of opportunities for “education,” “health,” and “income generation.”
Panasonic will continue to work with various partners to deliver lights to off-grid areas to create a “sustainable and inclusive society” where everyone can live a vibrant life.
(Left) A woman who works at night (weaving a roof) and (right) children singing with open music textbooks, all under the light of solar lanterns
In 2013, Panasonic launched the “100,000 Solar Lanterns Project” to deliver lights to off-grid areas, and by 2018, the company donated more than 100,000 solar lanterns to 30 countries in Asia, Africa, and elsewhere.
However, more than 600 million people still live in “off-grid areas” in places like Asia and Africa, and some people are unable to escape from poverty because they lack electricity. To further expand the scope of our donations, in 2018, Panasonic launched the LIGHT UP THE FUTURE – “AKARI” Action project in Japan. This project quickly and easily allows the general public and our employees to engage in eco-friendly actions. The company continues to deliver lights to off-grid areas by collecting books, CDs, DVDs, and other recyclable goods through the web as well as donation boxes, recycling those materials, and then converting the proceeds from that into solar lanterns.
In February 2022, Panasonic signed a “Partnership Agreement on the Installation of Donation Boxes to Promote Activities to Deliver Solar Lanterns to Off-Grid Areas” with Kadoma City in Osaka, Japan and for the first time, Panasonic installed donation boxes, which had mainly been installed within the company, outside the company.
At the request of the city government, Panasonic continued to install donation boxes at about 80 locations, including elementary schools and local businesses in the city, and the company expanded our partnerships to include universities, sports teams and commercial facilities in addition to Kadoma City. As a result, Panasonic currently collect recyclable goods at more than 200 different locations.
Kadoma Civic Plaza, Plaza Director (TOY BOX, Nonprofit Organization)
Outside of work, I engage in a variety of volunteer activities, and when I’ve thought about why I do volunteer work, I realized that there’s a connection between my ability to do something for others and my own happiness. I hope the people of Kadoma City will realize the same thing.
Click here to watch “Voices of Support from Kadoma Citizens” (Japanese)
Kyoritsu Women’s University, Faculty of International Studies, Professor
This time, the recipient was a very poor village where people live on less than $100 a month. The learning opportunities for children there were also very limited. Donating solar lanterns will allow them to learn at night and give those kids a chance to go to college. In other words, it’s an activity that gives children hope for their futures.
Kyoritsu Women’s University, Faculty of International Studies, Student
As students, we felt closer to the idea of being able to donate books that we had learned from instead of money.
Click here to watch “Voices of Support from Kyoritsu Women’s University” (Japanese)
Panasonic Panthers, Volleyball Player
I hope that many people will learn about this activity through sports. I donate books and CDs in the hope that I can also help people in off-grid areas.
Click here to watch “Voices of Support from the Panasonic Panthers” (Japanese)
Life With Dignity (LWD), Staff
This activity provides the inhabitants of poor communities with an opportunity. I think poor communities need solar lanterns more than donations of money. If people receive donations of money, it gets used up in a few days and they have nothing left, but in the case of solar lanterns, they can use them for a long time, like 5 or 10 years.
Board Chair for the JELA
I often hear people say things like “Panasonic products are really sturdy” and “wow, they last a long time.” I have actually seen a seven-year-old model in operation in India and I feel they are sturdy and of benefit to the community. I think this is an activity that is connected to the future of these people and has a very promising future.
Click here to watch “Voices of Support from Our Collaborative Partners and Other Related Parties” (Japanese)
At the Panasonic Group, each and every one of our employees is committed to social contribution, directly dealing with social issues as corporate citizens in ways that are different from our manufacturing, services, and other core businesses.
As members of society, we work alongside people helping make their lives a little richer and more peaceful.
In doing this, we help create a brighter future for the world in the best ways that we can.
As we work toward achieving a “sustainable and inclusive society” where everyone can live a vibrant life more freely, we carry out a range of “corporate citizenship activities” as we focus on our three priority themes of “Ending Poverty,” “Environmental Activities,” and “Human Development (Learning Support).”
JELA Foundation (https://www.jela.or.jp/en/)
A foundation established in 1909 to provide public services based on Christian teachings. With the love of Christ at its core, the organization has three programs that provide global child support, refugee support, and servant leadership (scholarships, sending volunteers, etc.).
Life With Dignity (LWD) (https://lwd.org.kh/)
A Cambodian NGO that works to improve the lives of the poor, especially in rural areas without electricity or running water in Cambodia. They are also making efforts to support children’s education by building schools and providing environments where children can learn to read and write.
LIGHT UP THE FUTURE
LIGHT UP THE FUTURE Activity Reports
[Cambodia Investment review] Panasonic Cambodia Continues Long-Term Mission Providing Affordable and Clean Energy to Rural Communities
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