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Harvest Appeal 2006  

(Editor's note - we eventually raised 1,150.00 for Practical Action. Many thanks to everyone who supported this appeal.)

This year, we're supporting Practical Action.

Practical Action works with poor communities to help them choose and use technology to improve their lives for today and generations to come.

Their work in Africa, Asia and Latin America is in partnership with poor people and their communities, building on their own knowledge and skills to come up with innovation, sustainable and practical solutions. Their work is people focused, locally relevant, environmentally sensitive and offers tangible ways out to poverty. Through its work, Practical Action demonstrates alternatives, shares knowledge and influences change.

Practical Action aims to help eradicate poverty in developing countries by developing and using technologies, and by demonstrating results, sharing knowledge and influencing others.

We're supporting Practical Action's Micro-Hydro Electric Project.

Project Objective

The objective of this project is to establish a fund that will promote the use of renewable energies in the rural areas of the Andean Region of Peru. The fund will allow the communities of isolated towns to have access to an appropriate and sustainable source of electricity.


Peru has a population of 27 million people of which approximately 30% have access to electricity. It would take an investment of close to 1.2 billion to completely revert this situation.

Electricity supply is expected to be increased mainly through the expansion of the national grid system. However, as the scaling up of electricity increases, the cost of expanding the grid also increases and the grid is unlikely to reach the thousands of isolated towns in the rural areas. As a result, viable energy options in these areas have to be based on the use of renewable energies such as micro-hydro and solar energy.

Practical Action

Over the last 14 years Practical Action has promoted technological change to supply electricity to rural people to improve their quality of life. During this period, Practical Action has raised over 500,000 which was used to leverage further funding amounting to approximately 1,150,000.

Practical Action has implemented 28 Micro Hydro Sites  and 50 Single-Family Photovoltaic Systems. This has benefited over 3,000 families living in 21 rural settlements as well as a similar number of families of neighbouring villages. The Micro Hydro Sites have also allowed approximately 200 small businesses to be established from which local family incomes have increased by 33%.

The Use of Electricity - Domestic and Public Lighting  

The supply of electricity will encourage an increase in  productivity during the evenings allowing children to  study and adults to undertake further income generating activities. It will also support local services that are delivered to the community, such as the local school health posts and community/religious centres. 

The longer term plan will be to drive the demand for productive services and local businesses. Future uses being battery charging services, coffee processing, carpentry workshops and other small businesses. 

For further information, please click here to visit the Practical Action Website.

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Power House and Water Channel, Atahuallpa

A Diary using micro-hydro powered electricity, Atahuallpa

Water Channel to De-Silting tank, Atahuallpa

Digging a water channel, Chalan

Doing homework by Micro-Hydro powered electricity, Chalan

Installing electric power lines and street lighting, Chalan