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Who are we?

Who are we?

At Surya Power, one of our core values is to promote environmental sustainability.

Human beings are at the centre of concern for sustainability. As humans we are entitled to a healthy and productive life in harmony with nature. As women we have an essential role to play in the progression of sustainable approaches to natural resource management.

It is because of these two reasons that Surya Power was born.

In 2009 we entered the green sector by assisting Eskom in the Low Pressure Solar Water Heater Roll-out. Our role meant that we planned the roll-out, engaged with communities and their leaders, and reported on the progress of the suppliers, installers and verified installations. Due to many factors however, the Solar Water Heater Roll-out programme did not reach the intended goals.

Still, our value to “promote environmental sustainability” was shaken by the failure of the programme.

We tapped into our grandmother’s ways, and prayed for guidance and enlightenment. We remembered the wise women in our lives, and the common theme that “There is no luck without preparation. Even in lotto, you must choose your numbers and go out and buy the ticket.”

We did not give up. I put an action plan together and we read tons of information on the funding mechanisms available to combat climate change globally. We pushed through doors to meet officials at The Department of Energy and National Treasury in order to learn and understand the progression of an agreements’ inception, acception and implementation. We took advantage of legislation and policies that redress past inequalities and support female empowerment. We got the enlightment we needed and we applied for the affiliated grants.

In our first year, we were successful in securing donor funding. We finally had the opportunity to enter the green economy.

I went back to the communities we worked in and employed young females, the youngest being 20 and the oldest 25, ensuring to build a racially balanced team of enthusiastic young ladies. We sought out engineering firms and signed enterprise development agreements with them which meant that we had access to the best minds and methodology at a fraction of the cost, while the firms benefited from the BEE scorecard and being quality assurance.

And to celebrate, we did what all women love to do, we shopped! We went shopping for suppliers that shared our values, ones that manufacture in South Africa, ones that have a spirit of Ubuntu and empowered companies with meaningful female respresentation on their boards. We did not want suppliers who simply import and drop off boxes, or ones who did not take young females in the energy industry seriously (you would be surprised at how many of those we came across). We have spent substantially on local manufacturers to ensure that sustainability is continuously being achieved.

Today Surya Power is focused on promoting socio-economic development, supporting women and youth empowerment, providing opportunities for growth, and building strong relationships with stakeholders.

We did not want to compete with engineeers, electricians and men. We are females, we complement men. Women with vision have helped shift the landscape in many industries, showing us new models of leadership that include natural feminine qualities such as softness, kindness, giving and emoting.

Climate change is often seen as a problem to be solved with science and technology. However, in order to reduce emissions, humans need to change the rate at which we consume and produce waste. Ecofeminism believes that instead of trying to fix global warming solely with science and technology, we should be focusing on an ideological approach that disregards domination and exploitation and takes into account interspecies justice and a consideration of the larger environment in which these problems take root.

Ecofeminism seeks to accentuate values such as care, trust, kinship and kindness, which are undervalued in mainstream environmental care practices.

Environmental sustainability is also about people and human rights not just emmisions and targets.

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Accreditations

Green Building Council South Africa
Construction Industry Development Board & Progressive Business Forum

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