Focuses of our development aid

Education

We contribute to the improvement of education and its quality in the place of operation. By modernizing and electrifying schools and training centers, we enable the use of technical and digital learning equipment. In addition, lessons can take place in bad weather, darkness and in winter, as the learning environment is improved by light in the classroom. This also results in better education and training opportunities.

Health

We contribute to improving health at the sites of operation. Many countries and regions have an inadequate power supply for the operation of hospitals. As a result of our deployment on site together with our cooperation partners, local health centers can be operated reliably. For example, medicines can be cooled, and medical equipment can be operated constantly. In addition, more money can be invested in specialists and equipment at the sites of operation due to the savings in electricity costs.

Access to water

We contribute to the access to drinking water. This favours diseases and lack of hygiene. The construction and installation of e.g. photovoltaic systems on site enables the operation of filter systems. Water turbines and water pumps contribute to the production of drinking water.

Social participation

We help local people to participate in social life. Meeting and community facilities can be operated by a reliable power supply and enable social events. Due to electric light sources, meetings are possible even after dusk. In addition, electricity simplifies digital networking and access to the Internet.

Security

We contribute to safety on site. Open fire as a light source and the accompanying smoke development leads to respiratory problems and pose an increased risk of injury. An uninterruptible power supply ensures the reliable operation of streetlights on site and the use of electronic light sources. This prevents accidents and incidents caused by a lack of light.

Economic development

With our operations, we support the economic development of the region. A continuous power supply on site enables, for example, the use of irrigation systems for agriculture. As a result, crop yields can be increased. Moreover, electricity enables the use of smaller electrical devices and machines. Due to the use of modern agricultural and farming equipment, income can be increased.

Our concept

A sustainable operating concept has a fundamental importance for the successful execution of all our projects.

Obviously, the basis is a reliable power supply. As far as possible, we use renewable power supplies, often in the form photovoltaic systems. In addition to that, close cooperation with the local partners is essential for us. In this way, we can support local companies, ensure the maintenance of the finished system and, of course, we need less effort to bring the materials to the place of operation.

However, not only companies are important partners on site. Often, other associations and institutions are essential connectors. They act as facilitators, help with language barriers, and support us with the numerous organizational tasks in the developing countries.

With our six project priorities, we set important conditions for sustainable development aid. Our voluntary commitment is directed at people, projects and regions that are not the focus of large aid organizations.

Our association structure

Each member has a different full-time job, and we all work as volunteers. In this way, we can ensure that all money donated is used for current projects. Electricians without borders is very decentralized since all members are spread all over Germany. However, we still manage to work efficiently with each other by using digital collaboration tools of Office365.

Our association is based on 6 pillars. Each pillar is led by a core team, headed by the chairman of the board and the deputy chairman. The areas of treasurer and auditor are considered separately from the association for legal reasons.

Organizational chart

The different pillars work on various topics, which is why we are not only dependent on the support of people with electrical background knowledge. Also, people who can support us in the respective pillars and actively contribute to the development of the association are required.

To give an insight into the activities of the different pillars, some of our members now introduce themselves personally.

Managing board

ChairpersonSylvain Volpp
Deputy ChairpersonAngelika Wenger
Project review and controlChristoph Brunner
IT & Data PrivacyStephan Müller
CommunicationMichelle Eckhoff
FundraisingPascal Eckhoff
MembersTom Weber
FinancesAnika Wied

Auditor
Anne Weber

Our membership structure

Each member has the same rights, which are secured by our charter. Hence, each member has one vote at the general meeting. However, internally we distinguish between basic membership and active membership. We know that not every member has the spare time to volunteer for the association and this is absolutely fine. Depending on the life situation and the spare time and every member can decide for or against an active membership at any time – a change is not a problem.

Active membership

Through an active membership, of course, you support us with your annual contribution. Moreover, you support us with your voluntary commitment, which is of essential for us. Only with human resources we can achieve our goals. You will be actively involved in the association’s work and you will get access to the Microsoft 365 collaboration platform, which is the main tool we use to coordinate all association activities and to organize ourselves. For data protection reasons, access can only be granted to a natural person, so active participation as part of a corporate membership is currently not possible.

Basic membership

With a basic membership you support us financially with your annual contribution, which you are welcome to increase. As a member you have automatically one vote for the general meeting and you will receive regular information from us about the current events of the association. We also benefit from you telling your friends, acquaintances and relatives about your membership.

Both as an active and as a basic member you have the possibility to set a higher annual fee, but also to take advantage of a discount if you are e.g. a student. The amount of the membership fee does not affect the rights of the respective member.

Basic membership
Contribution: 40€ *

Financially expanded membership
Contribution: > 40€ *

Discounted membership
Contribution: 20€ *
Students, Trainees

Corporate membership
Contribution: >= 40€ *
Public persons, companies, associations

* The minimum membership contributions will be reviewed every year at the general meeting and adjusted if necessary.

Our mission statement

Transparency

All actions towards Electricians without borders stakeholders and partners are characterized by transparency which ensures the credibility and continuity of our Organisation.

Sharing

Internal solidarity and the will to share one’s competences, skills, knowledge and experience are essential for the functioning of the association.

Internal democracy

Electricians without borders members implement a democratic structure ensured by elected representatives.

Charity

The members are engaged in the service of common association projects, which aim to give people access to essential services such as energy and/or water. They perform or participate in actions, constantly striving to serve the common project. Thus, they do not expect anything in return other but satisfaction through the performance of useful work.

Unselfishness

The members and elected representatives work on a voluntary basis. They see their engagement in the association as a way of self-fulfilment, appreciation of their know-how and the possibility to bring a purpose into their actions.

Competences and open-mindedness

The success of the actions carried out by the electricians without borders requires the commitment as well as the maintenance and the development of the multiple identified competences of the members.

Our values

Respect for the human being

Electricians without borders agrees with the general principles shared by the entirety of international aid organizations, in particular those enumerated in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Labour Organization Agreement.

Sense of Community

Electricians without borders collaborates primarily with other communities of international solidarity. Within the association Electricians without borders, all participants, regional associations, selected representatives and members, act in favour of an association project that is based on indispensable, collective functional processes.

Solidarity

The actions of the Electricians without borders are guided by the search of socio-economic and cultural population developments that do not yet have access to basic services such as energy and/or water.

Financial transparency

The regional associations and Electricians without borders mobilize the totality of possible donors – public donors, companies, public generosity – suitable to co-finance our actions in a traceable way.

Electricians without borders is meticulous in the use of funds received and the trackability of expenditures made, thereby seeking to maximize effectiveness and impact for beneficiaries.

Our history of origin

On January 12, 2010, an earthquake measuring 7.0 on the Richter scale (Landeszentrale für politische Bildung BW) hit the Caribbean nation of Haiti. When the first foreign aid workers arrived, chaos reigned everywhere. Roads, energy supply, rescue and law and order systems no longer existed. Sylvain Volpp, an engineer from Karlsruhe, was there to provide first aid in the field of energy supply with the organization Electriciens sans frontieres (ESF for short). After his stay in Haiti, he concretized his idea of an electricians without frontiers association in Germany. He asked his colleague Angelika for help with information and planning. So, in 2012, together with nine other volunteers, they founded the association Elektriker ohne Grenzen e.V. (Electricians without Borders). The parent association ESF helped them with the creation of the association’s statutes and the first two projects. Thus, although we see ourselves as a sister association, we are independent of the ESF association.

Many people disregard the factor of electricity. However, we are convinced that electricity is not a purpose itself, but an essential requirement for education, medical care and prevention, as well as essential for economic development. Imagine your everyday life without electricity, it would be paved with countless challenges. We would not be able to refrigerate medicines or food. We would walk home in the dark at night or study in non-lighted schools. Cooking with an open fire in a straw shelter or walking miles for water.

Hardly imaginable for us but unfortunately a reality for 840 million people (United Nations Report 2019). They often live in the simplest conditions and with very little chance of improving their respective living situations.

On the basis of a systematic needs analysis, we build up a power supply on site using renewable energies, but we also always pay attention to the social and cultural characteristics. One of the ways we ensure the sustainability of our projects is through training. This means that we train the local stakeholders in the use of the electrical systems, as this is the only way they can maintain them independently and take on small repairs without assistance. In two projects in Vietnam, we have established a cooperative model, so that when the community grows, it can expand the solar modules itself.

This is our principle: Development through energy.

Our members

Our number of members is growing steadily, and we are proud that we can rely on our volunteers spread all over Germany. We present you an interactive map of Germany with anonymized locations of our members.