Connected Solar School: Improving education at Zaatari Refugee Camp


In a first of its kind, SES and SOLARKIOSK have launched the “Connected Solar School” to deliver electricity, educational tools, and broadband internet connectivity to considerably improve the quality of education within the Zaatari Refugee Camp in Jordan, its press release said.

Zaatari Refugee Camp is currently host to more than 80,000 Syrian refugees, with about 25,000 children of schoolgoing age.

According to the project website, SOLARKIOSK’s E-HUBB provides reliable energy in off-grid areas worldwide, utilising solar energy to power connectivity, lights, and computers within schools. The E-HUBB interior will become the administrative centre for teachers and will have a power node to charge solar lamps, laptops, printers, mobile phones and tablets.

These services will be delivered to an education centre in the camp run by UNICEF and Relief International.

“Millions of Syrian children have endured violence, cruelty and displacement. Schools provide children a sense of routine and normalcy in their lives, and help them continue their education. Only through learning can children reach their full potential and play a positive and active role in rebuilding their lives and country,” said UNICEF’s Jordan representative, Robert Jenkins, in a press release.

Gerhard Bethscheider, managing director of SES Techcom Services, said: “Being able to access online teaching material is a vital part of modern education for both teachers and pupils alike.”

“Not only do our satellites rely on solar energy to fly in space, they rely on solar energy on earth to deliver connectivity. Together we aim to improve the lives of the refugees in the Zaatari Refugee Camp,” he added.

SES (NYSE Euronext Paris and Luxembourg Stock Exchange: SESG), a world-leading satellite operator, provides satellite communication services to broadcasters, content and internet service providers, mobile and fixed network operators and business and governmental organisations worldwide.

The Berlin-based SOLARKIOSK enables and empowers the sustainable economic, social and environmental development of Base-of-the-Pyramid (BoP) communities worldwide through the provision of clean energy services, quality products and sustainable solutions.

Civil war in Syria has forced more than four million to flee the country, among them two million children, leaving some 7.6 million displaced internally, while more than 250,000 people have been killed, the United Nations Commission of Inquiry on Syria said in its latest report. Jordan hosts approximately 635,324 refugees from Syria, which amounts to about 10 percent of the population.