Renewables nonprofit NC GreenPower’s project funding initiative Solar Schools is bringing solar arrays to five North Carolina schools this year. The company is seeking assistance with grant funding to bring solar systems in the 3 to 5 kW range to these Tar Heel state schools:
- The Center of Applied Sciences and Technology (COAST), Bolivia – Brunswick County
- Charles P. Murray Middle School, Wilmington – New Hanover County
- Hurley Elementary School, Salisbury – Rowan County
- Peachland-Polkton Elementary School, Peachland – Anson County
- Sunny View Elementary School, Mill Spring – Polk County
In Solar Schools’ first four years in action, it has reached 27 North Carolina schools in 22 counties, bringing solar and energy education to more than 23,000 students. In October 2003, NC GreenPower was launched to supplement North Carolina’s existing power supply with more renewable energy. At its 10-year anniversary, in 2013, NC GreenPower began assessing other initiatives and the potential of supporting PV solar projects that would make a broader impact on local communities. The result was the NC GreenPower Solar Schools pilot program.
Introduced on April 1, 2015, Solar Schools uses a portion of NC GreenPower donations to provide matching grants for small PV systems at North Carolina schools. All K-12 schools are eligible, though preference may be given to those in economically distressed counties as defined by the North Carolina Department of Commerce. Through the program, schools receive a 50% matching grant up to $10,000 for solar systems and are then tasked with raising the remainder of the costs.
Solar Schools uses the NC GreenPower fundraising website my.NCGreenPower.org. Awarded schools create a profile page and launch campaigns to raise money to fund their portion of the solar installation, and NC GreenPower supplements these efforts with marketing and social media promotion.
In addition to the solar array, schools receive a weather station, real-time monitoring equipment, a STEM curriculum and lesson plans, giving teachers valuable, hands-on tools to educate their students about renewable energy.
“Our goal is to provide teachers and students with a really fantastic educational experience that can be used now and for years into the future,” said Vicky McCann, VP of NC GreenPower.
To participate in the fundraising campaigns for these schools, visit my.ncgreenpower.org/campaigns, or to learn more about supporting NC GreenPower by providing grants to future schools, visit www.ncgp.org/donate.
News item from NC GreenPower