Mee Panyar, a social enterprise that trains rural electricians in Myanmar to build, operate and maintain solar mini-grids, has launched a crowdfunding campaign on the StartSomeGood platform. The campaign will allow Mee Panyar to launch a pilot in Myeik, near the border with Thailand.
Supported by the UK aid-funded Crowd Power 2, Mee Panyar has set a target of $40,000, with a stretch goal of $60,000. Funds will be used to cover pilot set-up costs, purchase tools and equipment to upgrade mini-grids, pay employee salaries and bring on partners, such as Remote Energy, to develop the technical-aspects of the training model.
Energy 4 Impact, through the Crowd Power 2 programme, will provide a cornerstone investment of $2,500 at the launch of the campaign and match funding up to $10,000 during their campaign. Crowd Power 2 follows on from the successful three-year pilot programme, Crowd Power, and provides co-funding to early-stage and growth-phase companies raising seed capital on donation, reward and equity crowdfunding platforms. The programme will also support the growth of peer-to-peer (P2P) lending by helping platforms to secure guarantees and local currency lending facilities.
Mee Panyar’s pilot project is expected to create jobs in the village, provide electricity for roughly 3,000 people, reduce their current electricity prices by 50% and reduce mini-grid carbon emissions by 60%. It will also help make the enterprise investment ready with a valid proof of concept.