• Rotary Year: 2017-2018
  • Application Date: 5/31/2017
  • Club Name (Primary): Montgomery County
  • Club Name 2: Blacksburg
  • Club Name 3: Christiansburg-Blacksburg
  • Project Name: Solar Power for Haiti School
  • Project Total Cost: $6,000.00
  • Grant Amount Requested: $3,000.00
  • Describe the Project, its location and its objectives: This project will provide solar power for Ecole Philadelphia de Mirebalais in Haiti. Rotary has supported this school twice previously with book grants totaling $13,000, of which $2,000 was funded by a district grant. In May of 2017, the school opened a new computer lab, which was funded by private donations. Unfortunately, power to the school has become sporadic, limiting the hours the lab can operate to an unpredictable window. The Montgomery County, Blacksburg, and Christiansburg-Blacksburg clubs will be collaborating on this grant to provide $3,000 towards the installation of solar power. The configuration has been reviewed and approved by an experienced solar engineer at Virginia Tech.

    Ecole Philadelphia serves children from the poorest families in the Mirebalais Bayas region of Haiti and is 100% donor supported. In addition to being used to teach the children of the school, the lab is planned for use for evening classes to educate adult learners.
  • Expected Start Date: 8/1/2017
  • Expected End Date: 9/29/2017
  • Expected Number of Beneficiaries: 250
  • Describe how the project will benefit the community and/or improve the lives of the less fortunate: Haiti is widely considered to be the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere. Many homes lack electricity and indoor plumbing, and these situations are particularly prevalent in the more rural areas of the country, such as the Mirebalais Bayas area, which is served by Ecole Philadelphia. Computer literacy is crucial to students gaining future employment. Enrollment this year is 207 students, and all will benefit in some fashion from the grant. The computers in the lab are equipped with learning materials appropriate to children ranging in age from preschool to high school. They are also equipped with generic equivalents of the Microsoft Office suite. Evening classes will further extend the value of the lab to adults in the area. There will be a charge for these classes, which will also provide a source of funds for food for a school lunch program.
  • Expected Total Project Volunteer Hours: 25
  • Describe the Rotarian hands-on activities in the project (i.e. non-financial participation): Project coordinator Steve Skripak worked with contacts in Haiti to obtain a quote from an area solar company, then had the configuration evaluated and approved by a solar engineer at Virginia Tech. He also arranged for Rotary in Haiti to verify the delivery of the system at a later date. Christy Brown and Lois Badey, from the Blacksburg and Christiansburg-Blacksburg clubs respectively, worked with the leadership of that club to obtain their approval to participate in this project. If appropriate roles can be identified, Rotarians from the Haiti club will be invited to work on the installation of the system. We will invite all participating club members to travel to the school in January 2018 to participate in a ribbon-cutting, tour the school, and meet the children and teachers, as well as our fellow Rotarians from Mirebalais. We will also do a roadshow to all participating clubs to share the outcome of the project with all members.
  • Describe the publicity plan to inform the general public that this is a Rotary sponsored project: The Christiansburg News Messenger has featured two articles about the school in the past. Both articles were written by freelance writers who are friends of project coordinator Steve Skripak. The author of the more recent piece, Jennifer Cooper, has agreed to write an update once the solar project has been completed. In addition, all participating clubs will share news of the project on their respective Facebook pages, which will extend awareness of Rotary's support for this school. Ecole Philadelphia also maintains a website and a Facebook page which will carry news of this project. Both are maintained by Steve Skripak. All clubs will be provided with links so they can carry news of the project on their websites and/or Facebook pages as they deem appropriate.
  • Cooperating Organizations – Please list each cooperating organization, if any: None
  • Letter(s) of Participation: Letter from Club in Haiti.jpg
  • Project Expenditure Budget – list detail uses of funds for the project, or use the Budget Upload.See template
  • Project Funding Budget – list detail sources of funds for the project, or use the Budget UploadSee template
  • Budget Upload: DCG2015-Budget-Template-4 Haiti Solar.xls
  • Primary Contact Name: Stephen Skripak
  • Primary Contact Rotary Position: Member
  • Primary Contact Email: sskripak@vt.edu
  • Primary Contact Phone: 540-231-7383
  • Financial Contact Name: Christopher Bartlett
  • Financial Contact Rotary Position: Treasurer, Montgomery County Rotary
  • Financial Contact Address: 
    Moss Arts Center
    190 Alumni Mall
    Blacksburg, VA 24061
    United States View on Map
  • Financial Contact Email: cbbartle@vt.edu
  • Financial Contact Phone: 1-540-231-0845
  • Project Authorization Form: Rotary Grant 001.jpg, Signature Pages.pdf
  • Supporting Uploads: Solar Quote 2.jpg, Solar Quote.jpg
  • Grant Number1718c-04
  • Grant Award$0.00