Personal story of Therus Gieling, owner of GC International
The start of the ‘Green Energy Ghana Project’
“The reason why I started the project in Ghana is of a personal nature. Previously, one of my children would prefer to play hockey and tennis, than go to school. I decided to ask a friendly contact if he could offer a job for my son, so that he could understand how the world actually works.
We came up with the idea to send him to Ghana, and to discover in eight weeks how people live in the city of Accra. After a week, he still couldn’t find a toilet in his temporary residence. When he came back, I asked him what he had learned and which profession he would like to choose: “I now understand what social security means, and I would like to become a doctor, after all I have seen and discovered in Accra”, he told me.
I asked my friendly contact what he would like as compensation for the experience my son had received. He asked me to help him with a project in Ghana with RVO and the Dutch embassy, to find a solution for the open sewage systems, to build toilets, and to develop a bankable project. I followed his request, free of charge, until RVO granted their permission for the project. Now and years later, I’m very glad and proud we are making progress, and currently constructing the waste-to-value installation together with Nijhuis Industries. I have also become a shareholder of the waste-to-value plant to secure also a proper operation in the future.
This bankable solution developed with partners like Nijhuis Industries is becoming a unique blueprint to secure people in emerging countries access to affordable safe water and sanitation and meeting one of the most important SDG goals.”