It was during a diving trip to Fiji in 2008 that East Corrimal father-of-four Rob Edwards knew it was time to help the island nation.
"I visited a school and the principal raced out to turn off the generator he had been running to do a short period of work on a computer. They could only afford fuel enough to run that generator a few hours each week," Mr Edwards said.
Just over 10 years after founding the It's Time Foundation, Mr Edwards has been honoured with an OAM for service to the international community of Fiji.
"Many island schools struggle with no electricity supply or rely on dirty diesel generators they can barely afford to run a couple of hours per day. The kids have little or no chance of a modern education," he said.
"It's Time provides clean, free energy for lighting and computers and transforms the education and prospects for these kids.
"It can mean the start of computer education at some schools. And the money saved on generator fuel creates decades of cash flow to buy the computers."
It's Time has to date installed significant battery supported solar systems in 22 schools.
Mr Edwards' goal is to do the same for the remaining 230 plus remote schools across Fiji.
In the process he wants to convert that experience into a template that any government or philanthropist can apply to other developing countries.
"It's a lofty goal, but I am out chasing the about $20 million to do that. The delivery model is in place we just need to add money," he said.
Mr Edwards said a nice side benefit of the solar projects was that when receiving a solar system, schools commit to all students spending 20 minutes each week picking up plastics - ocean drift plastics as well as their own.
The Plastic Free Oceans founder added there are thousands of kids and villagers clearing remote beaches of plastic.
"I've always had an environmental focus including being one of the founding members of the stop coal seam gas movement that successfully stopped gas mining in the Illawarra area and Sydney basin," Mr Edwards said.
Three years ago at a beach clean-up at Port Kembla it clicked to him that the solution to effective environmental change did not lay with the one per cent already committed enough to do a whole day on a beach picking up rubbish.
"It's the achievable day to day things all of us and business can do to be part of the solution," he said.
"A key element of the platform is that cafes, resorts and other business can share their small actions.
"This provides a clear point of difference in the market place that can mean more customers. A commercial driver delivering a better world for all of us can only be a good thing."