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Learning from Pascal Woldemariam

We spent a wonderful afternoon talking, laughing and learning with Pascal, his lovely wife who he affectionately calls Poupee (doll in French) and his partner at Greening Ethiopia, Bahrnegash Bellete. We learned that it is never too late to relax into your soul's calling.

The June Lite team had the pleasure and honor of interviewing the man responsible for planting over 30 Million trees in Ethiopia.  His name is Pascal Woldemariam and being an agronomist was just the beginning of his illustrious career as a champion of reforestation for a country he has the deepest love and respect for - Ethiopia.

We were invited into his home in Addis Abeba and were welcomed by the warmth and grace of his beautiful wife he affectionately calls “Poupée” which means doll in French.  In the 4 hours we spent with them, we learned of their love for a country that has seen it’s share of strife. The beauty here is, despite the difficult times he was well aware of, he retained hope in his heart. This hope has manifested into powerful changes that he has spearheaded.  

He knew retirement in Ethiopia would be ideal, but he also knew “retirement” meant he would be active in another way. That other way came when he noticed the severity of the deforestation in Ethiopia. From that realization came the wonderful ideal of reforestation - Greening Ethiopia was born.

For these reasons and more, we have chosen Pascal Woldemariam as our first June Lite Hero. He is a person who has used his gifts to contribute to the wealth of mother nature. He is a leader that has moved people into becoming part of the grand picture of reforestation. Women and men have been empowered, taught and motivated. We are grateful for you Pascal, “Thank You” for sharing in your calling with us all!



Greener Ethiopia in Haiti 

June Lite and Greener Ethiopia are embarking on an ambitious projects together to develop various rural communities in the south of Haiti alongside a group of dynamic actors of civil society. 

June Lite will assist in the illumination and electrification of these areas. There are three provinces that June Lite and Greener Ethiopia are looking to assist - Fond des Blanc, Aquin and Miragoine. With clean energy options and health supporting LED bulbs, we are able to illuminate these areas in ways that will prepare them to live safer and healthier lives. We insist on working with reputable partners to build electrical grids that we can uphold and maximize with June Lite KIND Bulbs/Fixtures/Luminaries.

How Greener Ethiopia is helping

Ethiopian and Haitian farmers shared their coffee growing techniques, both countries have the perfect growing conditions for coffee and Haitian farmers can greatly benefit from this knowledge. While in Haiti we visited a farm in Belo, high in the mountains of Haiti where our Haitian and Ethiopian farmers exchanged ideas on how to best create fruitful crops yielding the best coffee beans.  

Coffee has been important to Haiti’s economy since the early 18th century. There has been a drop in coffee production in the past few decades but a resurgence is well underway.  

Ethiopia is the largest coffee producer in Africa and the world’s 7th largest producer, it has a lot to offer in ways of learning how to mass produce successful coffee crops.  

Arabica coffee, a well-known coffee here in the United States, originated in Ethiopia.

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