The Pai Pai are an indigenous group in Baja California, traditionally a hunter-gatherer society known for their pottery, basket weaving and knowledge of medicinal plants. Today they are concentrated primarily at the multi-ethnic community of Santa Catarina in Baja California's Sierra de Juárez mountain range. The modern Pai Pai people have maintained their traditional knowledge though now they make a living raising livestock, working on ranches or selling crafts. Some of the families in Santa Catarina have access to electricity through the national grid but others are not hooked up. Families without electricity don't have lighting and are unable to use even basic appliances.
With the installation of 10 solar home systems, families will now have access to clean, reliable electricity in their homes. This will provide them with lighting for reading and studying at night, and the ability to charge cell phones and use kitchen appliances. Families will have better access to news, communication, entertainment, and income-generating opportunities.
During the week-long trip to Mexico, participants will be immersed in the rural Santa Catarina community, staying in the community and working alongside GRID staff and partners to assemble and install the solar systems from start-to-finish. Participants will learn about the community and the Pai Pai culture, and interact personally with families and community members. Before and after the project, participants will have the opportunity to explore some of the Baja California region of Mexico, known for its diverse ecosystems and excellent vineyards.