Community Circuits & Solar Santa Isabel March 2018
That's 10 Years of community-led solar projects in Guatemala. And we're really taking off!
Our first projects in 2008 were 4 solar installations with handmade circuit boards & LED lights built in Guatemala for rural family homes. This pilot project as done in exchange for long term information about the life and value of a small solar power system on the family's quality of life and health. We learned of the benefit of home productivity when there are lights on at night. A respondent said she could finally weave at night and her son could do homework. These comments encouraged us to spread that benefit.
We began offering community Circuits & Solar workshops to empower low income people to manage and install their own home solar power systems to benefit family economy and health. These workshops reduce the cost of solar power by empowering individuals to install on their own homes.
In 2009 we began offering trainings with CECAP of Santa Cruz la Laguna, finding that only a few girls participated. Noe Simon, Director of CECAP explained, “Girls won’t take these classes with boys, but we would be very interested in offering all girls-classes.” At this point we organized with Starfish-one-by-one, a girl's empowerment in education organization, to offer their students with empowering green technology workshops.
Feedback from one of the Starfish teachers commented, “It’s great to learn this green technology, but what are we going to do with it?”
Our response came in 2015, training 12 rural women from across Guatemala in solar power and entreprenuership. This group was in constant communication with us throughout the course of the program, their stories and comments during the project taught us that gender-based barriers to business were barring them from success. Some could not travel alone to make sales and lack of family support disuaded them from continuing.
We learned that the program would be more successful by identifying women leaders, including women's empowerment curriculum, visits to assure the support of their families, and training the entreprenuers to offer free public workshops on water filters, eco-stoves and solar power. This is what's coming in 2019.
Over 50% of project funds come from individual donors like you. We need $18,000 by December 31st to make the project a success. Please help us by sharing our project with your friends and family and becoming a monthly donor.
#GivingTuesday November 27th: New Monthly donors get 100% match on this donation after 4 consecutive months of giving.
Highschool girls install solar on school 2017
Women-owned solar business is 6 years old, 2018