After completing a degree in Banking and Finance, Alicia Rutajumbukilwa was looking for a job. Instead of ending up at a local bank, like many of her peers, Alicia (right) was hired by Ensol Tanzania to handle office operations and petty cash management for a solar home systems project in Lushoto, Tanga Region. Ensol provided her with basic knowledge about solar technology and the chance to attend energy-related workshops, trainings and conferences.
Her responsibilities eventually expanded to include community awareness, training, and recruitment of new beneficiaries. Alicia realised that many Ensol customers wanted the capacity to use the energy for home micro-businesses and other productive uses, but this was not possible due to the size of the systems. While brainstorming with top management, the idea of implementing mini-grids was born.
Alicia began conducting pre-feasibility surveys for mini-grids in rural villages and Ensol secured financing to implement a 48kW solar hybrid mini-grid system in Mpale. In the new project Alicia held the position of Project Development Manager, responsible for overseeing all project operations with the help of a team of five other staff. Alicia has participated in surveying 15 more villages, which are now in the pipeline, and is raising finance for scale-up.
Working at Ensol has given Alicia the chance to learn new skills, identify challenges and solutions, and directly impact people’s lives.
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