Originally published on Sustainnovate.
By Henry Lindon
The solar-powered flashlight company WakaWaka launched a new initiative to increase awareness + support of “families caught in crisis,” at the recent Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2016.
The new initiative — “#SharetheSun” — was active for the week of January 4th through 10th; and saw WakaWaka offer to donate one solar flashlight to the International Rescue Committee for every image shared “with your eyes closed and hashtagged #SharetheSun on Instagram or Twitter.”
“We’re thrilled to invite everyone at CES and the public to join the #SharetheSun movement through the use of social media to bring light to thousands of refugees and displaced people around the world,” stated WakaWaka CEO, Jehmu Greene, at the time. “WakaWaka has become synonymous with safe, sustainable and clean solar solutions that serve both developed and developing countries: the same premium, high-quality products for all markets.”
The idea behind having people post photos of them with their eyes closed was apparently based around the idea of having people imagine what it’s like to live in the dark.
“Our brand is all about making a difference and creating impact,” stated Camille van Gestel, WakaWaka co-founder. “We would like to raise awareness about the plight of refugees and to help spark change as the technology industry and leaders gather at CES. This issue has been close to our hearts and minds for years. WakaWaka’s giving partner, the International Rescue Committee, has told us that WakaWakas are the most valued non-food items in Syrian refugee camps, a lifeline, a means of communicating and connecting, and a source of light and empowerment for families torn apart by civil war and strife.”