Akon is giving back in a major way. The R&B singer is using millions of his own dollars to bring solar-powered electricity to one million homes in Africa by the end of the year.
The Senegalese-American star launched his new program, called “Akon Lighting Africa,” this month. “How could you build any infrastructure with no lights?” he said in a recent interview. “Without electricity, you can’t even operate the machines to build roads or bridges. …That’s what created the initiative.”
“After certain hours, it’s completely pitch-black,” he detailed. “Even for myself, as a child growing up in Africa, it wasn’t that bad, but I know how life could be so much easier if they had those necessities.”
According to the Associated Press, the “project aims to install solar equipment in households to improve energy sufficiency. He’s partnered with Give1 Project, ADS Global Corporation SA and public-private solar energy companies.”
Since he started the initiative, Akon said he’s financed 10 light posts and power for 100 homes in Mali and Guinea Conakry. He’s also met with government leaders about bringing more light to Senegal, Gambia and the Ivory Coast.
During an interview with EURWeb, the five-time Grammy nominated artist said he’s promoting “Akon Lighting Africa” like it’s a new album. “In America sometimes the concept of having that opportunity to be able to go back to Africa and invest and be a part of Africa’s growth has been really kind of quiet. This is a way to open everyone’s eyes to do it,” he explained. “I’m utilizing this opportunity and I’m promoting it like I would promote my album or record or anything of that nature.”
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