Providing energy to households in Kenya
The Digital Agents for Energy+ was conceived to meet the energy needs of underserved households in Kakuma and Kalobeyei, Kenya, a community of forcibly displaced and local Turkana. Designed and implemented by Mastercard, the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC), the International Trade Centre (ITC), Total Access to Energy Solutions and BioLite, the project will train micro-entrepreneurs to function as agents (‘digital agents’) in their communities to sell energy solutions and facilitate their connections to external markets. Using an application to connect suppliers, wholesalers and digital agents, the programme will connect refugees and host community members to income-generating activities, enhancing local business capacity and entrepreneurship skills.
The project aims to first test the model on a small population, targeting 20 micro-entrepreneurs and five small wholesalers. Its aim is to serve the 180,000 refugees in Kakuma, along with 60,000 people in the town itself. While the initial stage of the programme incorporates solar energy products, the key objective is to diversify the portfolio beyond energy. This will not only maximise the potential of the digital agent infrastructure and better serve the community, but also help ensure the model is both scalable and replicable.