Solar Electric Light Fund Now Accepts Cryptocurrency Donations!


The Solar Electric Light Fund (SELF) now offers its supporters a cutting-edge way to help fund the fight against energy poverty. Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies can provide a “forever” legacy when they fund SELF’s efforts to install sustainable solar systems in remote, rural communities in the developing world.  Consider this:

Nearly one billion people live in rural areas of the world where there is no access to electricity. They are condemned to a life of poor health, inadequate education, lack of economic opportunities, food and water insecurity, and isolation from the rest of the world.  The Solar Electric Light Fund, The Giving Block’s first solar nonprofit partner, addresses energy poverty by designing and sharing replicable, scalable and sustainable solar solutions with the potential to improve the lives of hundreds of millions of people.

SELF Executive Director Bob Freling sees a natural connection between SELF and the crypto community:

“By virtue of being a universally distributed source of energy, the sun helps level the global playing field in much the same way that blockchain technology paves the way for a world that is more decentralized and egalitarian.  We are honored to be able to invite those in the cryptocurrency community to invest in this important endeavor.”

Among SELF’s innovative solar electricity applications meeting the needs of rural communities are water pumping and purification, electrification of schools and clinics, vaccine refrigeration, street lighting, community centers, microenterprises, and wireless Internet access.  SELF’s Solar Market Gardens (SMGs) combine solar-powered water pumping with drip irrigation, enabling women farmers in places such as Benin, West Africa to feed their families nutritious food year-round and sell surplus produce to the community.  Through its Momentum for Change Award Program, the United Nation’s Framework Convention on Climate Change put SELF’s SMG projects in the spotlight at the Paris Climate Summit.

SELF is working in Uganda with the Rape Hurts Foundation (RHF) to demonstrate that sexual assault against women and girls living in rural areas can be reduced through solar solutions. If they no longer have to search outside of their villages for clean water and firewood for cooking, the women and girls can avoid assailants.  SELF has installed a clean water station and 17 solar-powered street lights in the village where RHF is headquartered.  In just a few months, the return on investment has been remarkable. The number of sexual attacks is down.  In addition, the clean water in the village is helping to eliminate water-borne diseases, and new solar street lights provide nighttime gathering areas for students to study and families to socialize. With additional support, SELF will install a micro-grid for the RHF safe house and school and a solar cooking program to phase out wood cooking.

“It is important to note,” says Freling, “that SELF is not only set up to receive crypto donations, we also promote the use of crypto with our local partners, including the Rape Hurts Foundation in Uganda, by using it to pay for equipment and supplies needed for our projects.  It assures that we can provide reimbursements and payments almost immediately—freeing our partners’ and vendors’ working capital for other projects.”

In this new effort, SELF is partnering with The Giving Block to expand and tailor their messaging to the innovative and generous cryptocurrency community. Over the last three years, the cryptocurrency community has given hundreds of millions of dollars to the few nonprofits that accept cryptocurrency donations.

Cryptocurrency donations also provide tax benefits to donors. The IRS classifies cryptocurrency as property, meaning they are not subject to capital gains tax and are tax-deductible on the donor’s tax returns. 

SELF is now accepting donations in the following cryptocurrencies:

  • Bitcoin (BTC)
  • Ether (ETH)
  • Litecoin (LTC)
  • Bitcoin Cash (BCH)
  • Zcash (ZEC)
  • Gemini Dollar (GUSD)
  • Chainlink (LINK)
  • Basic Attention Token (BAT)

Click here to donate cryptocurrency to SELF!



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Since 1990, SELF has completed projects in more than 25 countries and pioneered unique applications of solar power such as for drip irrigation in Benin, health care in Haiti, telemedicine in the Amazon rain forest, online learning in South Africa and microenterprise development in Nigeria.

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