CES 2016: WakaWaka

What is it like to try to carry on your daily life without light? For many in the underdeveloped world having connectivity is a luxury. The International Rescue Committee has observed that WakaWakas are the most valued non-food items in Syrian Refugee Camps. Craig caught up with Jehmu Green the interim CEO of WakaWaka at CES2016.

WakaWaka is a social impact company that makes premium solar flashlights and chargers. WakaWaka is shines bright in Swahili, and their line of products provide access for thousands to the abundant energy from the sun. WakaWaka is a worldwide leader at the intersection of solar technology, sustainability and humanitarian impact.

During CES they have a social campaign running (Jan 4-10) for every photo you share with your eyes closed on twitter or instagram with the hashtag #sharethesun, a light will be donated to the IRC to help families. Check out more about WakaWaka and their products below, and keep listening to Craig Peterson’s Tech Talk for the latest in technology.

Jehmu Greene is Interim CEO of WakaWaka, an award-winning global social enterprise that develops, manufactures and markets the world’s most efficient premium solar-powered flashlights and chargers. The company has also helped bring light and power to more than a million people worldwide living without access to electricity.

Previously Ms. Greene served as President of the Women’s Media Center and Rock the Vote. Under her leadership, over 1.4 million young people were registered to vote, membership grew from 1,500 to over 1 million, and young voter turnout increased 11%, the highest increase ever recorded in between two presidential elections. Having served appointments at the Center for Policy Alternatives and the Democratic National Committee, where she ran the women’s office, Ms. Greene has been recognized as one of Essence Magazine’s 40 Women Under 40 Shaping the World, and received the National Conference for Community and Justice’s Community Service Award, American Association of University Women of Distinction Award, and the National Council for Research on Women’s Women Making a Difference Award.

A lifelong evangelist for social good, Ms. Greene is a widely sought-after speaker and commentator, including as a political analyst for Fox News. Her commentary has been featured on The Daily Show, NBC News, The New York Times, and numerous other media outlets. She was appointed by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to the United States National Commission for the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

Ms. Greene began her career working in the fertile ground of Texas politics, including an early stint with Governor Ann Richards’ campaign in 1994. Since then, she has worked on more than twenty political campaigns at the local, state and national level, and served as an advisor for Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.

Born in Washington, D.C. and raised in Austin, Texas, Ms. Greene is the daughter of Liberian exiles. Her passion for social enterprise and democracy is deeply rooted in her family’s first-hand experiences with the realities of war and social disorder.

WakaWaka, which means “shine bright” in Swahili, is an award-winning social enterprise on a mission to end energy poverty by sharing the abundant power of the sun with more than a billion people worldwide who don’t have the luxury of a light switch and another billion who don’t have reliable access. The company develops, manufactures and markets premium, top-performing solar-powered flashlights and chargers.

To date, WakaWaka has helped bring power and light to more than one million people living without access to electricity. WakaWaka’s Share the Sun model seeks to end reliance on toxic kerosene. Replacing kerosene lamps with WakaWaka solar lights has a critical, large-scale effect on health, safety, education, community and economic development, particularly in remote regions, disaster-struck or war-torn areas. For every WakaWakapurchased, one light is given to a family caught in crisis.

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