Notes From the Field: Preventing Tragedy in Southern Kenya-LuminAID

Notes From the Field: Preventing Tragedy in Southern Kenya

After a kerosene lamp was knocked over in the middle of the night, a deadly fire highlighted the need for safe, sustainable light in the village of Mtangani, Kenya.

In many remote villages across the African continent, dangerous kerosene lamps remain a prevalent source of light. The village of Mtangani, outside of the city of Malindi in southern Kenya, was no exception until tragedy struck.

Corien Norder reports how, “In March last year two huts with small children sleeping caught fire, They were the children of our carpenter. The youngest rolled over in her sleep and tipped over a kerosene lamp and the synthetic mattress immediately caught fire. Two of his children died, three children were saved, but were badly burned and had to stay in the hospital for six months!”

Child burn survivor with scar.

Seven-year-old Mupa survived the fire, and although her scars will never fade away she still has the strength to smile.


Our partner Stichting Mtangani works closely with village residents to raise their standard of living and self-reliance. In order to do so, the organization has facilitated many projects to improve the lives of the villagers, with the goal that all projects become self sufficient. Upon learning of Mupa and her family’s tragic story, the organization started the solar lamp project to raise as much money possible to buy lamps for the villagers.

In a renewed effort of the project for 2018, the organization was able to raise enough money to purchase one hundred and sixty six subsidized LuminAID lights for the residents of Mtangani. Not only will LuminAID’s solar lanterns help protect against the dangers of kerosene lamp fires, but the lamps also further Stichting Mtangani’s goal of making the villagers more self-sufficient by increasing their day-to-day productivity. The solar lamps will let children safely do their homework, allow adults to work in the evenings, and reduce any ailments associated with polluted airways caused by kerosene fires.

Child proudly holding light.

LuminAID is proud to be a part of an effort to prevent such tragedies from ever happening again.

Learn how you can join our mission to share safe light around the world.