RCE Greater Nairobi - 2022


VacciBox- Portable Solar Healthcare Refrigerator
Basic Information
Title of project : 
VacciBox- Portable Solar Healthcare Refrigerator
Submitting RCE: 
RCE Greater Nairobi
Contributing organization(s) : 
Kenyatta University, UNESCO, NEMA
Focal point(s) and affiliation(s)
Norah Magero
Organizational Affiliation: 
Drop Access
James Mulatya
Organizational Affiliation: 
Drop Access
Format of project: 
Language of project: 
Date of submission:
Thursday, October 13, 2022
Affordable Healthcare for All
At what level is the policy operating?: 
Affordable and Clean Energy
At what level is the policy operating?: 
Climate Action
At what level is the policy operating?: 
Geographical & Education Information
Africa and Middle East
Makueni, Kajiado Counties
Address of focal point institution for project: 
P.O BOX 75-90138, Makindu. Mulatya Memorial Complex B, Shauri Moyo Area, Off Wote Road, Makindu Makueni
Target Audience:
Socioeconomic and environmental characteristics of the area : 
VacciBox serves low-income, Rural and off-grid communities. It has proven significance in use in areas that experience relatively hot climates and temperatures of 30-40 degrees celcius, hence face cooling challenges.
Description of sustainable development challenge(s) in the area the project addresses: 
Globally, 940 million still live without electricity and Africa hosts at least 560 million of this population. Also, 87% of them live in rural areas. My country, Kenya has managed to achieve an 85% electrification rate, but still, millions of people living in the rural lack access to sustainable energy.
Among the challenges of inaccessible electricity in rural Kenya, is the lack of reliable cold storage among low-income communities to serve healthcare facilities, small-scale farmers and SMEs. In healthcare, 50% of vaccines produced go to waste and majority of this loss occurs in Africa due to the cold chain and energy access gaps
January, 2020
The goal of the project is to further develop the portable solar fridge to meet the needs of rural and off-grid health facilities, in order to provide affordable, reliable, and sufficient cold storage for vaccines, drugs, blood for transfusion, and other healthcare uses. The project strategy is to manufacture 15 more VacciBox Units and conduct a large-scale pilot program in Kenya. The fridge development and testing will focus on advancing the fridge design further to comply with WHO standards.

1. Manufacture 10 VacciBox units
2. Testing of performance compliance
3. Field testing with at least 50 hospitals
4. Data collection and monitoring
5. Submission of bid to WHO
Activities and/or practices employed: 
1. Manufacturing
2. Iteration
3. Metal work
4. Fiber glass moulding
5. Insulation
6. Electrical installation and testing
Usungu Health Centre in Makueni County is totally off grid. They did not have a cold storage facility prior to the pilot and had to transport vaccines from the nearest level-4 facility twice a week during the Maternal & Child Health (MCH) Clinic days. After the day’s vaccination or when the ice packs began to thaw, remaining vaccines would be transported back to the level-4 facility, 25 kilometres away. With the VacciBox fridge, they can now stock over 1000 vaccine doses and immunizations have increased by 45%. The Nurse in charge at Usungu expressed that VacciBox has saved him a lot of time, money spent on fuel for his motorbike and mental strain in transporting the vaccines to and fro to avoid vaccine spoilage.
Merrueshi Health Centre in Kajiado is connected to a weak/unreliable grid and uses a soda fridge to keep vaccines cold. Being based in a maasai conservancy, they serve a vast and sparsely populated community. Women traverse upto 30 kilometres to attend the MCH clinic which occurs once a week. As a result many women prefer not to take their children to the clinic for immunisation resulting in missed opportunities. With VacciBox, the health workers conduct field vaccinations to reach those children who would otherwise have not received their vaccines. As a result, vaccinations have increased from 150 to 500 per month. The Nurse in charge particularly likes VacciBox because it is light and can be easily moved from one homestead to another using its wheels and comfortable handles.
Key messages: 
Globally, 3 billion people are at the risk of not accessing quality healthcare through immunisation, because their healthcare facility does not have a cold chain to effectively and efficiently store vaccines. VacciBox is a portable, low cost solar-powered fridge for use in the healthcare industry. It is coupled with an online application for remote monitoring and sensing, online troubleshooting and data collection. The fridge utilises the Internet of Things (IoT) to enable the easy and swift provision of data-driven technical support through online, remote monitoring and troubleshooting. VacciBox is a versatile solution that eases vaccine distribution, stock management and enables access to real-time and accurate data for planning.


File Name Caption for picture Photo Credit
Image icon VacciBox on a bike time at 22s.JPG (1.58 MB) VacciBox on a bicycle Drop Access
Image icon DSC00637.JPG (5.35 MB) VacciBox at a health facilility Drop Access
UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
(https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/sdgs) and other themes of Education for Sustainable Development (ESD)
SDG 1 - End poverty in all its forms everywhere 
SDG 3 - Ensure healthy lives and promote wellbeing for all at all ages 
SDG 5 - Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls 
SDG 7 - Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all 
SDG 8 - Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment, and decent work for all 
SDG 9 - Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialisation, and foster innovation 
SDG 10 - Reduce inequality within and among countries 
SDG 13 - Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts 
Disaster Risk Reduction 
ESD for 2030-Priority Action Areas
Priority Action Area 1 - Advancing policy 
Priority Action Area 2 - Transforming learning and training environments 
Priority Action Area 3 - Developing capacities of educators and trainers 
Priority Action Area 4 - Mobilizing youth 
Priority Action Area 5 - Accelerating sustainable solutions at local level 
I acknowledge the above: