“I know that one day, people will tell your story and say that you have changed the world” – Beatrice Sonfack at TechWomen The first day I ever spent on the roof with GRID Alternatives, I happened to look across the freeway and see a few tall houses with all black solar arrays in a row. I realized the GRID customer community - low-income families with access to solar - is small compared to the relatively more privileged community with easy access. GRID’s mission started to resonate, make solar practical and accessible to the people who could truly use it. It’s the reason I became a GRID Team Leader, finishing 14 installs in the last 12 months.
Women in Solar
More women now than ever are giving the boot to customer service and clerical jobs, putting on hard hats, and picking up the tool box.
The women of WE Build were preparing ourselves for a volunteer workday in Steamboat Springs. We headed out for the 148 kW array at Yampa Valley Electric Association, where we filled up on breakfast and coffee to charge us up for the day.
In September, a group of 50 women from around the country joined GRID Alternatives Colorado for GRID’s first-ever WE Build retreat. Over two days of camping and comradery, the women installed 200 panels on a low-income community solar array in Steamboat Springs, Colorado.
Two weeks ago, GRID Alternatives Mid-Atlantic welcomed four new GRID employees to the team! The new hires are part of GRID’s SolarCorps program, the result of GRID’s partnership with AmeriCorps. Three new SolarCorps Construction Fellows and one new SolarCorps Volunteer Fellow are now part of our Mid-Atlantic family!
While installation tends to be the most visible type of solar job, the industry has opportunities in a multitude of sectors suited for individuals with varying backgrounds - even those who don't want to get on the roof! Solar jobs can be in sales, project management, financing, and many other departments.
I would like to say thank you to the strong group of volunteers and job trainees that I have met this past year as the Workforce and Volunteer Fellow at GRID Alternatives Bay Area. I am continuously humbled by your heart and passion for the communities we serve and the hope of a cleaner environment. Since I was hired a year ago, together in the Bay Area you have volunteered 3,123 hours, helping us install 134 systems that will save over $3.6 million for the families while preventing nearly 7,519 tons of carbon emissions. This is the carbon offset is the equivalent of planting over 174,906 trees.
Troops to Solar volunteers install solar for Marine veteran and single-mother Karina Chavez.
GRID Alternatives Central Coast is pleased to announce the certification of 4 new team leaders working to install solar for low income families. The Team Leader program was developed for “super volunteers” – volunteers who attend repeated solar installations with our team- working towards mastery of a checklist of installation skills. It takes time, patience and dedication to achieve team leader status and these solar hotshots have certainly earned their coveted orange shirts!
On a sunny Saturday morning in June, five women came together to volunteer in a South Sacramento neighborhood by installing a solar array. Many of them had never met one another or the homeowner they served, but they were all held together by a common bond: each of these women, along with GRID Outreach Coordinator Kim Garrett, comes from a background of military service.