WATCH NOW: Introducing Engineering Brighter Tomorrows

Last Thursday on June 27th, Engineers Without Borders Canada introduced Engineering Brighter Tomorrows (EBT) to our community and supporters. The new energy project is aimed at addressing the needs of educational and healthcare facilities in Zambia and Malawi through sustainable solar solutions and is structured around the systems change approach that has always been core to EWB’s work.

The webinar, which you can also rewatch here, was joined by panelists:

  • Brian Harrigan (CEO, Engineers Without Borders Canada): Brian is an engineer with a B.Eng degree from McGill University, and an MBA from University of Ottawa. With 25+ years of experience, he has worked in the not-for-profit and private sectors in over 30 countries, several in Africa. He founded and led his own organizations, and held CEO and executive level positions with organizations such as Cuso International, Nutrition International, and Deloitte.
  • Dr. Martin Mbewe (Nyimba District Health Director, Zambia): Dr Mbewe Martin is a Public Health Specialist with a degree in medicine from the University of Zambia and Master of Public Health from University of Lusaka. He is a believer in equitable healthcare and promoting access to integral resources for all, especially during critical times.
  • Thomas Mkandawire (Senior Education Officer for Guidance and Administration, Ministry of Education in Chipata, Zambia): With extensive experience in educational leadership, Thomas Mkandawire plays a pivotal role in shaping educational policies and administration, ensuring quality guidance and support for schools throughout the region.
  • Namoonga Shikapande (Programs and Project Director, Engineers Without Borders Zambia): Namoonga Shikapande is an accomplished B.Eng engineer and sustainable development leader with extensive experience in telecommunications and project management. As the Programs & Projects Director at Engineers Without Borders Zambia, she spearheads initiatives focused on essential services, including energy access, digital inclusion, and access to water. Driven by a growing passion to bridge the gap in underserved communities, her work emphasizes sustainability and strategic partnerships, aiming to create lasting positive impacts.

The speakers discussed the critical need to address energy poverty in Zambia and Malawi, introducing the EBT project and key findings so far from EBT’s initial project visits.

“Only 10 health facilities in Zambia’s Nyimba district are a part of the national grid and have predictable electricity. Over 60% of our health facilities are not a part of the national grid. Having access to reliable electricity would make a huge difference to health, especially maternal and children.”
– Dr Martin Mbewe

Reliable access to electricity would lead to life-changing impact in the health and education sectors, especially on women and girls, including safety, education, and economic opportunities. (Directly support this project and other EWB initiatives here.)

Through collaboration with local organizations and alignment with government plans and community needs, we hope to foster sustainable environments that enhance learning, healthcare services, and overall development.

“Electricity works as a booster to our education system because schools that have access to electricity have advantages like being able to use a variety of equipment in the classroom like projectors, computers. Apart from that, electricity also allows for Internet connectivity, which promotes e-learning and research that helps students work on their own and have a more interactive learning experience.”
– Thomas Mkandawire

EBT’s goal is to create innovative solutions focused on addressing digital inclusion challenges and educational and healthcare barriers through a systems change approach, creating lasting impacts that go beyond the immediate benefits of solar energy installation.

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