At the age of 20, most students from New York University would dream of graduating with flying colours and land in lucrative job offers but Mansi Prakash was different. She was dreaming of bringing light into life of many underprivileged families living in third world countries.
In 2010, while visiting her grandparents in India, she noticed villagers going without lights at night to save money. The villagers use incandescent bulbs which not only result in high utility bills but also burn out quickly. The villagers could not afford energy efficient bulbs. Hence Mansi brought ten bulbs and donated them to few villagers. Then she understood that this is the problem not just in one village but many villages in the world. She decided to something about it and thus born a social entrepreneur in her.
She realised that if someone could bear the initial high costs for the bulbs, the poor villagers could save 80% from their electricity bills which they can spend in healthcare , education. With this in mind, she started non profit Brighter today and she is now sponsored by Clinton foundation and electronics giant Philips. Together they have been able to bring cost-effective, eco-friendly, long-lasting lighting to 5,300 residents of the Behlana village near Chandigarh for the first time.
As per Take part , Prakash is focusing on a new project for the Philippines called Light for Life. Powered by daylight, it’s a solar panel prototype that can provide 24-7 lighting and fan power as well as a station for recharging mobile phones, says Prakash, who will be partnering with Philips again for the rollout.
“The device has been assembled with local materials readily available and has been tested for the last six months with encouraging results,” she says, adding that it requires no maintenance, is easy to install, and has zero running costs.