Refilwe Sebothoma

Hakem Energies

What does your company do?

Hakem energies has been established as an impact enterprise which focuses on combating energy poverty by making LPG accessible, particularly in marginalised communities. We are acutely aware of the challenges faced by marginalised communities in relation to energy poverty and firmly believe that our business will continue play a crucial role in addressing these issues, as well as the wider socio-economic impacts that stem from energy poverty. Below are some of the socio-economic impacts I am referring to: - Millions of South Africans are still living without electricity, those who have it spend hours which turns into days without it due to load reductions. many are then targeted by criminals during this darkness. - There is "Firewood Rape" where women are raped when they go into the veld to collect wood and dung to make fire to heat up and cook for their families. it is reported that about 48 new victims reported per day. - Informal settlement shack fires continues to be a huge risk, especially during winter as poor communities depend on paraffin stoves (which have been proven to be unsafe) for heating their shacks.9 000 cases were reported for FY2022. - Paraffin poisoning is said to be causing 24 000 hospitalisation cases with 171 and 498 children dying because in most homes paraffin is stored in juice and cold drink's bottles and toddlers then mistaken it to be something drinkable. - 11% of lung cancer deaths are said to be attributable to exposure to toxins from household pollution. We are particularly enthusiastic about the potential for long-term sustainability and positive impact that Hakem can bring into these communities.

What is your biggest success?

We have setup two points of sales in communities. We have done a lot of awareness, trainings, demonstrations and education around LPG safety. we have partnered with a mining house which helped us to donate 100 LPG affordable packs to the poor families, changing their lives for the better. contribution to employment and entrepreneurship has been great too.

What has been your biggest hurdle?

Many communities are still scared of gas, so education will continue to be critical. Many poor communities cannot afford the initial purchase of the gas cylinder and stoves, we will continuously be looking for CSI partner to help with subsidies and donations. The business is expensive and need a lot of requirement to setup.