Sempra Foundation and GRID Alternatives advance energy access for orphans and migrant youth in Mexico
SAN DIEGO, Aug. 16, 2022 — Sempra Foundation, founded by Sempra, and GRID Alternatives announced the completion of multiple solar energy installations designed to help provide access to clean renewable power for environmental and economic justice communities in northern Baja California, Mexico. The solar installations serve as onsite power sources for several organizations including Rancho de los Niños, an orphanage near Ensenada, and YMCA Menores Migrantes, a youth migrant shelter in Tijuana. Organizations have seen electricity cost reductions of up to 50%, allowing funds to be reallocated to critical needs that are not typically covered by donations.
“Having personally visited one of the orphanages and the migrant shelter recently, I was able to witness first-hand the tremendous impact that these solar installations have had on the dozens of children who reside at both locations,” said Molly Cartmill, chief stewardship officer of Sempra Foundation. “Energy is foundational to progress, and by providing these children with cleaner, more affordable, more reliable energy, precious resources can now be spent on medicine, books and other important necessities, helping to shape a better future for all.”
Sempra Foundation provided $200,000 in funding for the projects as part of its year-long collaboration with GRID Alternatives to install grid-tied solar energy systems at seven locations: two orphanages, two Indigenous residential communities, a health center, a migrant center, and a hospice serving individuals experiencing homelessness and living with HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis. GRID Alternatives will also provide support with equipment maintenance and operation over time.
“The impact of the installation of solar panels has been something that transcends our daily costs. Because the reality of what we’ve seen in the past few months is that our electricity costs have been significantly reduced,” explained Valeria Ruíz Griego, general coordinator of YMCA Menores Migrantes. “And now we can use that money for other needs that aren’t covered by donations, like food, hygiene products and clothing for the boys and girls.”
Given the success of this project, Sempra Foundation plans to collaborate with GRID Alternatives on a second phase of solar installations. Phase two is expected to include more than 140 kW of solar energy and battery storage systems at nine different locations benefitting hundreds of residents and community members across Baja California, Mexico.
About Sempra Foundation
Founded by Sempra in 2007, Sempra Foundation has long been focused on investing its energy and resources into efforts to make a real difference for people when they need it most. Sempra Foundation invests in the issue of energy access for those who live in energy poverty, helping to advance social progress and shape a vibrant future for all. The foundation also has a long history of supporting relief efforts when disasters strike, including wildfires, hurricanes, earthquakes and other events.
Sempra Foundation additionally encourages community engagement by supporting the 20,000 employees who work for Sempra and its operating companies, helping them to deliver their energy with purpose in communities by matching certain employee contributions of time and money to any eligible 501(c)(3) charitable organization they choose to support.