Indiana Solar for All Is a non-profit program whose mission is to quickly ramp up the spread of rooftop solar to all households in Indiana while making it affordable to those who need it most.
ISFA identifies and qualifies households to receive donated materials or materials at reduced cost in return for fulfilling a volunteer labor commitment to install solar systems for themselves and the other members of their group, and to help pass on the opportunity to the next group.
Eight families were selected in the first round to receive a ten-panel, 3 kilowatt solar system. Four installations were completed in October and November 2018, and the rest in the following spring. A second round of 12 grants awarded in 2019 will be completed in 2020. Six more families received grants in 2020 and will be installed in 2021.
Initial funding came from the Solarize Bloomington campaign, an initiative jointly sponsored by the City of Bloomington and the Solar Indiana Renewable Energy Network (SIREN). Solarize is a group-buy arrangement that reduces prices for all participants through negotiated volume purchases. It also reduces marketing costs for installer partners, who pass on a small part of their savings to fund Indiana Solar for All.
Recipients can fulfill their volunteer commitment in a number of ways:
- Assembling, wiring and installing the systems. Training and oversight is provided by a consulting solar contractor, Whole Sun Designs.
- Organizing, publicizing and fundraising for the program.
- Recruiting friends or family members with needed skills.
Some who volunteered in 2018 were not grant recipients at all. They simply donated their time to help others go solar, and to learn how to install these systems themselves. Beginning in 2019, volunteers who do not meet the income requirements for free or reduced-cost solar equipment but have contributed eighty hours of service may ask to purchase panels through ISFA and be put on the schedule for installation at no cost. Only a limited number of spots are available in this way.
Solar for All is an initiative of the Center for Sustainable Living. Tax-deductible donations are welcome from individuals and organizations interested in renewable energy, community resilience, and economic equity.
Sponsors and donors
Indiana Solar for All greatly appreciates the support of our sponsors and donors. These include:
- Whole Sun Designs
- Unitarian Universalist Church of Bloomington
- Green Sanctuary Task Force of UUCB
- Solarize Bloomington participants
- St. Thomas Lutheran Church, Mission Endowment Fund
- Stephanie Kimball
- Lesley and Geoffrey Oelsner
- Dave Debikey
- Global Gifts
- Anne Hedin
- Philip Anderson
- Carmela Senor-Euhl