News from the Field
At 90-plus degrees, Saturday was a sweaty day for the third annual GRID Alternatives Central Valley Solarthon, but for the families of Parksdale, it was a happy one. Thanks to the hard work of over 100 individual sponsors, corporate employee volunteers, job trainees and the homeowners themselves, the families electrical meters will be running backward this summer, not forward, saving them thousands of dollars during what is usually a season of high bills.
When Bryson Pagh, a solar student at Fresno City College, showed up at a job fair for Real Goods Solar two years ago, there was one thing that set him apart from the hundreds of other job seekers: he already had close to 70 hours of hands-on installation experience under his belt through GRID Alternatives.
Jose Damian is a cancer survivor, one of our amazing homeowners who is full of life and determination to make the best out of what life has given him.
Hector Villegas was unemployed and although he had a desire to work in the green energy field, he lacked the necessary skills to land a job. That all changed when he became a volunteer with GRID Alternatives and gained the knowledge and experience he needed to land his dream job.
We recently sat down with Jon and Kitty Harvey (and their dog Donner) to find out what motivates them to be loyal and generous supporters of GRID Alternatives and how it ties in with their personal values of making a big difference and a small footprint in our world.
On Friday June 10th, GRID Alternatives completed its 1000th solar electric system installation for low-income families throughout the state of California. This milestone took place at the home of Ms. Celia Juarez as part of the Enterprise East Los Angeles Green Grant Program.
"Living in Japan, you see how everything they do is based on saving something, whether it's energy, water or other resources," said Norm Graham. "That's the life they live. Every other house in Japan had solar panels. I thought "why can't we have that here in America?"
Elmer Rankin is a seventy-year-old Navy Veteran who served on a Nuclear Submarine from 1958 to 1962. He has lived in Sun City, California for the past 14 years. Elmer is disabled and is living with congestive heart failure and prostate cancer and undergoing chemotherapy.
On November 5th volunteers, sponsors, job trainees and GRID Alternatives staff from all over the state got together to successfully install 10 solar electric systems for 10 families in 1 day. Despite rain on Friday the skies opened up on Saturday for what turned out to be a warm and sunny afternoon. This provided the perfect backdrop for what was an overall wonderful community based event.
Tom King had a decent job in produce distribution but he didnt wake up every day feeling passionate about going to work. So he began to look for something else to do.