Solar Ray Amper saw the light with Rayan Bahchik thanks to GIL
"I was propelled into the world with a new mindset, I became self-reliant and it opened the door for endless possibilities and new chances for success. I encourage youth to take part in GIL because it is as challenging as it is rewarding"
Twenty-six-year-old Rayan Bahchik, living with his mother in North Lebanon, is the best example of an ambitious and positive young man who enjoys outdoor experiences and loves preserving the environment while always chasing new opportunities to grow on a personal level.
Rayan came up with the brilliant idea of creating Solar Ray Amper, a portable solar panel. Since he majored in Electric Engineering, he was able to bring about his first prototype whilst totally relying on his new-found skills and knowledge.
Upon finishing his studies in North Cyprus, he came back to Lebanon in 2018 and started working as an operator. Unfortunately, after a while, he got laid off along with other colleagues due to the ongoing economic crisis. Leaving the country was on his mind, however, he chose to stay with his recently widowed mother.
At the time, one of his friends came across an advertisement of GIL, UNICEF Lebanon’s Generation of Innovation Leaders, which introduced him to its entrepreneurship programme. GIL is powered by UNICEF Lebanon and funded by the Kingdom of Netherlands and The Andan Foundation.
Throughout his participation with INJAZ Lebanon, Rayan discovered his passion for entrepreneurship and his ability to create the career path that he always wanted. After gaining enough confidence during GIL, he later pursued other entrepreneurship programmes to attract more funds for his project. He, therefore, joined the Darb w Dar project with INJAZ Lebanon, the Tripoli Entrepreneurs Club (TEC), and the Waterlution programme. He is indeed one ambitious man!
“My hiking and camping experiences were my initial source of inspiration. The portable solar panel enables me to spend long hours in nature since it provides up to 12 hours of renewable energy,” he said.
After obtaining his seed funding from GIL, Rayan was able to equip his home-based laboratory. “I call my project ‘Solar Ray Ampere’,” he cheerfully added. “There are competitive Chinese products on the market but I offer reasonable prices and after-sales services.”
Even though people are struggling with the unstable exchange rates and exorbitant prices, the demand for his product is still high. “I offer two options including indoor and outdoor energy substitutes. 12 volts batteries and 220 volts batteries which solve basic electricity needs starting at the low cost of 20 US dollars. In Lebanon, we have lots of power cuts and private generators that charge a minimum of 1,200,000 Lebanese Lira per year which is a great amount to bear especially for underprivileged communities,” said Rayan.
His debut was with GIL, he had no previous experience in entrepreneurship. The programme offered him interactive quality training and improved his soft skills. Startups require extensive planning and intricate feasibility studies, therefore, the initial business model canvas he prepared with GIL became his professional passport into the world of fund-based competitions.
"GIL was an important milestone in my journey. We were provided with the best coaching and support. Without GIL I would have probably ended up leaving my country in search of opportunities; it helped me expand my initial idea and explore my potential. When I participated in other competitions, I was always designated to be the leader in my group,” he proudly added. “This alone proves how much I have grown with GIL and I am forever thankful for it."
Rayan is interested in protecting the environment by reducing pollution. Making the best out of sustainable natural energies is a pressing priority. He is proud to have participated in projects such as ‘Darb w Dar’ because it aims to revive rural and ecological tourism in Denniyeh. He also took part in ‘Waterlution’ project which aims to preserve the iconic Litani River.
“I was propelled into the world with a new mindset, I became self-reliant and it opened the door for endless possibilities and new chances for success. I encourage youth to take part in GIL because it is as challenging as it is rewarding,” he concluded.
"I tell them: Do not give up, focus on what you can offer rather than what you will gain because self-development is everything!"
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