The Story of the Solar-Powered Audio Player
Just a few years ago Truitt Adair, President of Sunset International Bible Institute, began looking for a way to reach even more remote places of the world with the Gospel. He commissioned some of his staff to begin researching a way to effectively teach more people in more places, particularly places where Bible teaching had not gone. After some time and research, the staff came back with their recommendation – use solar power. One and half billion people in the world, 1 out of 5, do not have the advantages and benefits of electricity. During their research, they discovered a group was working on using solar power as the way to reach remote villages in the world.
However, a significant problem existed. While solar power was advancing, the state of development even a few years ago made using solar power problematic because the size of any portable device was much too big. Truitt’s statement about the situation was, “It has to fit in your hand.”
Continued development brought success. Now Sunset has available the latest generation of the solar-powered audio player that is the size of a “fat” smartphone that can, indeed, fit in your hand. And the only reason it is even that big is because it houses a speaker that can easily be heard and understood by groups of 50 or more at a time.
Next came the field testing. About 100 units were given to key men in selected countries in Africa to see if the solar player would be effective for its intended purpose. The units were used over a year’s time in various countries and the reports came back positive. The solar player proved effective in all conditions.
THE NEXT STEP
The durability and flexibility of the solar player will greatly enhance the ability to reach and teach many more people than before. As one of the church leaders who tested a unit said, “This will be a great tool. All you need to do is put it in the sun for a few hours and you are ready to go.” The solar player can teach day after day for years. And teach thousands of people about God.
Not only did reports come back but so did requests, lots of requests. The solar player was so effective and proved to be such a force multiplier that many requests from several nations are now coming to Sunset asking for the solar player. Those making the requests tell about how there were not enough preachers and teachers for all of the many congregations that have sprung up in nations of Africa.
They said the solar player could be used to train many more preachers that could work in congregations that don’t have preachers. And, they said Bible classes and whole congregations at a time could be taught from the solar player. Not only could much larger numbers of people be taught more quickly than before, but the depth and quality of the teaching would be increased many times over.
That is because each solar player would contains over 400 hours of Bible and Bible teaching and songs that could be learned for worship. Leaders in those nations said the existing churches would become more grounded and more mature and that many new churches would be planted through use of the solar player.
For only $500 per unit all of this becomes possible.
THIS IS THE BEGINNING, the first steps to use solar technology to teach many more people God’s Word in depth and then train them to teach others, no matter where in the world they are.