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The U.S. Green Chamber of Commerce is excited to bring you our newest Q&A series, Global Sustainability Leaders.
We’ve traveled the globe searching for the best and brightest sustainability leaders and we’ve found them. In our series, you will meet the
people who are creating a healthier and happier planet for you, your business and your community. Click here to view all of our Global Leaders

Laura Stachel

Company/NGO Name:

We Care Solar

Region, Country:

Headquarters- Berkeley, CA

Regional Office- Kampala Uganda

We Care Solar Reach:

Liberia, Sierra Leone, Nigeria, Ethiopia, The Gambia, Uganda, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, Malawi, Mozambique, Nepal, and the Philippines

1. What inspired you to choose your career path?

I was an Ob/Gyn for 14 years before turning my attention to public health care and learning that 300,000 women die each year from complications of pregnancy and childbirth. I became a social entrepreneur conducting ethnographic research in a Nigerian state hospital in 2008 and realized women were dying in silence in hospitals lacking reliable electricity. My life mission became tied to the global problem of energy poverty in healthcare. I co-founded We Care Solar to create programs and technologies that would give health workers the power to save lives, address the global issue of health facility electrification at scale.


2. What is the mission of your company/NGO?

We Care Solar provides health workers with “the power to save lives.” We promote safe motherhood and reduce maternal and newborn mortality in developing regions by providing health workers with Solar Suitcases that offer reliable medical lighting, medical devices, and power for mobile communication and other devices.

Globally, 300,000 women and more than one million newborns die every year from complications of pregnancy and childbirth, often in energy-deficient health facilities where health workers struggle to rely on fossil-fuel sources of light and power. We Care Solar is changing these unsustainable conditions.



3. What is the most innovative or environmentally/socially impactful project/practice your company/NGO has implemented?

We Care Solar envisions a clean energy future where every woman can access safe, timely obstetric care in a well-lit health facility. Through our Light Every Birth initiative, we partner with governments, NGOs, and UN agencies to equip frontline health facilities with clean, continuous power. We are building a coalition united by three core beliefs:

  1. Every woman has the right to a safe delivery.
  2. Every health center is entitled to reliable light and electricity.
  3. Solar energy offers an immediate and sustainable solution to this global challenge.


4. How have those projects positively impacted the local community and/ or your country?

We have equipped more than 5,200 energy-deficient health centers with We Care Solar Suitcases®, trained 20,000 health workers to use our technology, and enabled 6 million mothers and newborns to have safer deliveries.  Solar Suitcases are an environmentally-friendly technology that replace fossil-fuel forms of light and power (candles, kerosene lanterns, diesel-fuel generators), promoting cleaner air and healthier communities.




5. What is/are the biggest incentive(s) for businesses in your country to adopt sustainable practices?

Our country, and indeed our planet, is in crisis. Climate change is real, We confront the devastating effects of climate change every day. Heat waves, fires, storms, floods. We only have one choice – and that is to immediately adopt sustainable practices, reverse our present course, and promote healthy air, land, and water.


6. What is/are the biggest environmental or social challenge(s) facing your country today?

  1. Climate Change
  2. Failed Leadership at the White House on the environment
  3. COVID-19 and public health crisis
  4. Racism and Social Inequities


7. What are your top 3 career accomplishments?

  1. As an Ob/Gyn in the San Francisco Bay Area, I cared for thousands of families and empowered women in their own reproductive health journeys.
  2. As a public health social entrepreneur, I co-founded an international non-profit with my husband to bring clean energy and safer deliveries to thousands of communities in Africa and Asia.
  3. I just completed my doctorate in Public Health at the University of California, Berkeley. My dissertation was a qualitative research study that analyzed the experiences of 1,200 health workers from 11 countries to illuminate the impact of energy poverty on healthcare delivery and the benefits of clean energy for maternal-newborn care.


8. Please share any new projects you will be implementing in the near future.

In addition to our clean energy for safe childbirth program, we are educating American students about solar energy through our We Share Solar program. This hands-on STEM education program gives youth the opportunity to “Learn, Build, and Share” and shows them that clean energy matters. They learn about the benefits of solar energy, build a solar suitcase, and share this by donating the Solar Suitcase to an energy-poor school in a developing country or use it for emergency-preparedness in our own communities.


To learn more, please visit We Care Solar on their website and social media:

We Care Solar