While new staff members were learning about their roles at GRID Alternatives Central Coast, we were also teaching volunteers and job trainees in solar construction. Our team and volunteers spent a great deal of time this summer building 30 solar installation projects in a new development in Hollister, a city about two hours north of our Atascadero office. The affordable housing development was built by South County Housing, one of our valued partners. The solar electric systems on these homes in Hollister will produce a total of approximately 86.7 kW of power and provide a sum of $734, 370 in client savings over the lifetime of the systems. Our Hollister Summer Immersion in Solar enabled us to provide volunteers and job trainees with real-world experience through hands on training in solar installation both on the roof and the ground. It also gave us a chance to pilot Troops to Solar and Students for Solar, two of our new Workforce Development Initiatives and enabled us to have two Women’s Builds as part of our National Women in Solar Initiative.
Special thanks to CET Soledad, The Coast Guard of Morro Bay, students and Veterans of Hartnell College, the participants of our two Women’s Builds, and our numerous individual volunteers who came from all over California to help build with us [Photos]. From June through August, a total of 66 different volunteers traveled to Hollister to make these 30 solar projects happen for our low-income clients. Together, our Hollister volunteers donated more than 1,000 hours to GRID Alternatives Central Coast during the three phase Hollister project, installing 8-12 projects at a time. Thanks also to our non-construction GRID Alternatives staff who took time out of their busy work schedules to get on the roof in Hollister and support the entire team.