The association Bintumani D-SL has applied to the Decade Project “Sustainable Learning” with the Hans-Böckler-Schule (Oberstufenzentrum Konstruktions-bautechnik) in recent years.
We have received several awards for our long-term commitment, especially for the African project in Sierra Leone.

The two members of the association, Erich Kotnik (founding member, deceased in 2013)
and Norbert Hoffmann were awarded the Bundesverdienstkreuz (Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany) for their long-standing social commitment, especially for Sierra Leone.

Award from the SolarZentrum Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania for the idea to establish an “Information and Training Centre for Renewable, Decentralised Energies” in Freetown and Kontakt Line, Sierra Leone.

More and more photovoltaic systems are being installed in Sierra Leone. However, there are no specialists for the maintenance and repair of the systems. This is where we want to start and offer assistance.

Award 2016

The village of Meni Curve in Sierra Leone is equipped with a wide range of electrical equipment. The village, which used to live without electricity, will be equipped with sustainable photovoltaic systems.
50 houses
A school
A hospital ward, with a fridge to store medicines for longer.

The Solarzentrum Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania has honoured this commitment of our association.

press release

Stadtwerke Konstanz GmbH


Bintumani Deutschland-Sierra Leone is the winner of the Enspire Award endowed with 5,000 Euro.

Konstanz The association Bintumani Deutschland-Sierra Leone wins the Enspire Award 2016, which is endowed with 5,000 euros.”The innovative project to supply the Meni Curve project village in Sierra Leone with solar energy has convinced our jury of experts,” says Kuno Werner, managing director of the public utility company Stadtwerke Konstanz. Together with jury member Marion Hammerl, Managing Director of the Bodensee Foundation and other representatives of the public utilities, he presented the cheque to Norbert Hoffmann. Dr. Ladipoh, chairman of the Bintumani association, is very pleased about the award of the Enspire Award:”With the prize money we can promote the social and economic use of solar technology in our project village Meni Curve and give all inhabitants a new, sustainable perspective.”. 

Enspire Energie, the nationwide green electricity brand of the Stadtwerke Konstanz public utility company, is certified with the Green Electricity Label. The certification now supports the winning project. The jury was made up of Marion Hammerl, Prof. Dr. Maike Sippel, Faculty of Civil Engineering at the University of Applied Sciences Konstanz, as well as the graduate geographer and graduate tropical technologist Rosa Hemmers, Chairwoman of the Grüner Strom Label e. V. The Enspire Award was awarded for the third time in 2016. 

The winning project 

The prize money will be used to provide Meni Curve, a small town in the northeastern part of Sierra Le-one in West Africa, with its own energy supply. The village will be equipped with photovoltaic systems in 2016/2017 and will then have solar power from renewable energies. The systems of the houses are equipped with a specially developed hard- and software box. These boxes enable the individual PV systems to be networked to create an intelligent, decentralised power grid. The installation and maintenance of the systems is carried out by the regional project partner Barefoot Solar Women Engineers. 

The innovative Smart Grid enables the inhabitants of the village to trade in self-produced solar power: they can sell electricity that they do not need to their neighbours. This additional source of income helps the residents to finance their own solar system. In addition, the system enables residents to generate electricity if their own PV system does not meet their needs. 

The existing energy can be used more economically by networking the individual plants and the investment costs per kilowatt hour consumed can be reduced in this way. This in turn creates new investment opportunities, for example for a solar-powered drinking water well or electrically powered miniature tools for production. The costs of the project can be covered by the 5,000 Euro grant from the Enspire A-ward. 

Infos on the green electricity label: 

It is the oldest and most demanding seal of quality in Germany and the only one that is supported by environmental associations. The central criteria for certification are the origin of green electricity and the promotion of the expansion of renewable energies through a fixed amount per kilowatt hour sold. Info: 

Information about the Enspire Award: 

The Enspire Award is based on the nationwide green electricity brand of the public utility company Kon-stanz. Enspire Energie supplies natural electricity from 100 percent German hydropower and has been awarded the Green Electricity Label. The certification will support the winning project. The Enspire Award, established with the aim of establishing renewable energies in emerging and developing countries outside the EU, was presented for the third time in 2016. Info: 

Info about the association Bintumani: 

The Bintumani association was founded in 1998 by German and Sierra Leonean citizens. The social and economic consequences of the civil war that lasted until 2002 for Sierra-Leone are immense. From the founding of the association until today, Bintumani has handed over ten overseas containers with relief supplies to the partner organisations in Sierra-Leone. In many on-site visits Bintumani supported the partners with know-how and energy. For example, training courses for medical staff were held; German doctors operated in the field of paediatric surgery. At present, the focus is on the sustainable development of Sierra Leone. Energy technology plays an important role in this. 

Photo: Awarding of the Enspire Award 2016 to the association Bintumani: (from left) Jury member Marion Hammerl, Managing Director of the Bodensee-Stiftung, Dirk Gutzeit, Phaesun, Norbert Hoffmann, Bintumani, Managing Director of the Stadtwerke Kuno Werner, Dr. Jacob Ladipoh, Bin-tumani, Steffen Maier, Project Manager Enspire Award, and Gordon Appel, Head of the Bintumani Association.

The village “Meni Curve” has received electric power for lighting of houses, school and infirmary.

Together with the company “soldesign”, we have developed the KARANA monitoring system for the sustainable use of installed systems. It will be docked to all PV systems at the beginning of 2018 and provides corresponding data that can be read and recognized by the “barefoot women solar engineers” for quick maintenance.

For this hardware and software project in Meni Curve, the Solar Centre Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania has presented us with an award.

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