July 26, 2023 – San Diego, CA – In a Rolando strip mall that houses the United Women of East Africa nonprofit, community members and leaders from San Diego Community Power and the San Diego Foundation gathered to announce they are granting $390,000 toward local clean energy and green workforce development projects in San Diego County.
These are the first awards from the Community Clean Energy Innovation Grant Program, a collaboration between San Diego Foundation and San Diego Community Power, a locally-run, not-for-profit, public agency that provides clean, reliable, and affordable energy to customers in Chula Vista, Encinitas, Imperial Beach, La Mesa, National City, the City of San Diego, and the unincorporated communities of San Diego County.
“Since its inception, San Diego Community Power made a promise to reinvest revenues in local community programs,” said San Diego City Councilmember and San Diego Community Power Board Chair Joe LaCava. “Today, we are fulfilling that promise. These clean energy grants are just the beginning of the organization’s commitment to providing value to its customers and creating a cleaner, greener, more affordable energy future for all.”
San Diego Foundation is administering the grants on behalf of San Diego Community Power and donated $90,000 to increase the impact of the program with a specific focus on workforce development programs.
“Through our partnership with San Diego Community Power and other initiatives, we are creating a green workforce representative of the diversity of our county to build more resilient communities and grow our economy,” said Mark Stuart, President, and CEO of San Diego Foundation.
San Diego Community Power is California’s second largest Community Choice Aggregator (CCA); providing nearly 1 million customers with electricity purchased from renewable and clean energy sources.
San Diego Community Power awarded grants to:
- Climate Action Campaign – $30,500 to organize workshops for San Diego residents and contractors on how to access available incentives from state and federal programs.
- Community Housing Works – $34,500 to promote energy awareness and reduce costs by installing smart light switches in affordable housing properties through a partnership with Flick.
- Environmental Health Coalition – $40,500 to support its Holistic Healthy & Climate Resilient Homes program that promotes home energy improvements and indoor air quality.
- Hammond Climate Solutions Foundation – $25,000 to increase community energy resilience in Barrio Logan through solar and storage installation.
- La Mesa Park & Recreation Foundation – $34,500 to support an electric tool lending library and green community events in the City of La Mesa.
- MAAC Project – $45,000 to support MAAC’s Electric Vehicle Access Program to reduce carbon emissions and increase electric vehicle adoption in Communities of Concern.
- San Diego Green Building Council – $45,000 to expand its Electric Home Cooktop Program that allows San Diego residents to -borrow energy-efficient induction cooktop kits at no charge.
- United Women of East Africa – $45,000 to promote sustainable energy behaviors and reduce energy consumption and costs in San Diego’s East African communities.
In support of clean energy and green workforce development programs, San Diego Foundation awarded the following grants:
- Casa Familiar – $44,998.35 to support Casa Verde, a workforce development program that provides extensive training on environmental justice principles, community organizing, and climate change impacts in the South County border region.
- GRID Alternatives – $45,000 to support the installation of solar panels and storage in Communities of Concern. Each installation site serves as an opportunity for hands-on learning for San Diego’s next generation of clean energy workforce.
“As an organization dedicated to the well-being of the East African community, this grant will enable us to serve refugee women and families in a fresh and meaningful manner,” said Meshate Mengistu, Program Manager of the United Women of East Africa. “Through educating our community, particularly our youth, about simple and sustainable energy practices, we are inspiring them with culturally relevant knowledge that will aid in reducing energy consumption and saving money for all”
The Community Clean Energy Innovation Grant Program was informed by a community needs assessment conducted by San Diego Community Power as part of its Community Power Plan, a five-year strategic plan for customer energy programs. San Diego Community Power garnered feedback from more than 3,450 community members between May and November 2022 through listening sessions, workshops, pop-up events in hard-to-reach communities, and a customer-wide survey. The community needs assessment findings were critical in developing the grant focus areas to ensure that grant funds meet the needs, goals, and priorities of the communities it serves.
About San Diego Community Power
San Diego Community Power (SDCP) is a local electricity provider that will serve your community by bringing you cleaner energy at competitive rates. We put our communities first, helping you take a giant step toward a more sustainable energy future while prioritizing equity and supporting local, good-paying jobs. We are a locally managed, not-for-profit, public agency that focuses on what families need and want most when it comes to their energy. Every single dollar that comes into SDCP gets reinvested to benefit local residents and businesses in our region. Learn more at www.sdcommunitypower.org.
About San Diego Foundation
San Diego Foundation inspires enduring philanthropy and enables community solutions to improve the quality of life in our region. Our strategic priorities include advancing racial and social justice, fostering equity of opportunity, building resilient communities, and delivering world-class philanthropy to realize our vision of just, equitable, and resilient communities. The Environment Initiative seeks to preserve and protect our resources, build a more sustainable path of economic growth, and ensure a higher quality of life for those who call San Diego home. For more than 48 years, San Diego Foundation and its donors have granted more than $1.4 billion to support nonprofit organizations strengthening our community. Learn more at SDFoundation.org.