by Carina Skovmøller, VELUX Group

Today, 1.2 billion people worldwide have no access to electricity. To mark VELUX 75th anniversary of bringing daylight and fresh air into people’s homes, the VELUX Group is enhancing its social focus on the world’s off-grid areas.

To address this issue and the need for sustainable light that benefits off-grid communities, the VELUX Group has partnered with Little Sun, a social business founded by world-renowned artist Olafur Eliasson and engineer Frederik Ottesen. Together, the two companies will develop a special edition of Little Sun’s core product, a budget-friendly solar-powered lamp in honor of VKR’s 75th anniversary.

To inspire a new generation of designers to tackle the issue of sustainable energy access, the special-edition solar lamp will be created with the help of design students from all over the world.

To develop the new lamp, the VELUX Group and Little Sun are organising Natural Light, an international design competition in which design students are invited to give their take on how to bring sustainable light to off-grid areas in Africa.

29,000 units of the winning design will be produced and funded by the VELUX Group. Using entrepreneurial distribution models, the Natural Light project will donate an initial supply of 14,500 solar lamps, which will be sold at local affordable prices, into communities without electricity, thereby creating employment opportunities and growing communities.​

“To promote solar power is to invest in radical change for the lives of many – while at the same time caring for the planet we all share. Holding hands with the sun is holding hands with the future. Access to energy and light allows you to determine the direction of your life. We are thrilled to be working with the VELUX Group on this project, inspiring young designers to make a real impact through innovation and creativity. Our actions have consequences for the world,” says Olafur Eliasson, co-founder of Little Sun.

Read more and enter the competition:

little sun 5 little sun 7