Quisqueya, in Spanish, or Kiskeya, in Haitian Creole, is the indigenous name for the island of Hispaniola before it was colonized by the French and the Spanish. EAF's Quiskeya/Kiskeya Program advances energy access on the island where there exists the greatest number of people in the Americas without access to modern energy. Complicated by the long history of conflicts between the two nations that inhabit the island; Haiti and the Dominican Republic. In the international news we can see that conflicts continue to this day related to the complicated status of Haitians and people of Haitian decent living in the Dominican Republic. By supporting Dominicans and Haitians collective efforts to use solar PV technology to reduce energy poverty, create job opportunities, and improve education, EAF aims to help rise above the bi-national conflicts by fostering positive cross-border collaborations. The Quisqueya/Kiskeya Program seeks to draw upon the human talent and abundant solar resource available across the island.

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Projects


PICO PV PRODUCTS FOR HAITI WITH SOLARWAVE

(IN PROGRESS)

Solarwave is a Dominican enterprise owned by Lic. Raquel Guzman, a female entrepreneur with over a decade in the solar business. Lic. Guzman has a university degree in accounting. Solarwave is located in the province of Puerto Plata just three hours from the border towns of Dajabon, Dominican Republic and Ouanaminthe, Haiti. Solarwave has a staff member who is of Haitian decent and bilingual in Spanish and Haitian Creole.

Pico PV Products are small, plug and play solar PV products ranging from solar lanterns with one LED lamp and a cell phone charger to small solar home systems with several lights, a cell phone charger and other small appliances. These products retail for $25 to $200.  

These products will be distributed through Haitian women entrepreneurs who receive basic training from Solarwave, purchase the products from Solarwave, and distribute them in Haiti. Importation into Haiti is extremely complicated, time consuming and risky. Solarwave has many years of experience with reliable and efficient importation of solar products into the Dominican Republic. Solarwave also has many years of exporting solar products into Haiti through distributors.

This project plans to support Raquel Guzman as an entrepreneur to help her build the delivery capacity of Solarwave into Haiti. The Haitian people are in great need of basic lighting and communications. The country is a very fragile state and there is no electrical service for seven out of the ten million inhabitants. Those who are connected to an electrical utility experience frequent power outages. 

EAF will provide working capital and technical support to advance this project. The goal of this project is to distribute thousands of Pico PV Product in Haiti with Solarwave. If you'd like to support Solarwave please make a contribution!

 

Bella Vista school

The Dominican government decided to build many new public schools throughout the country. The rural community of Bella Vista was fortunate to be selected. This beautiful new school opened in 2014 to serve 200 students, from kindergarten up through the eighth grade.  About 10% of the students served are of Haitian decent. 

The community of Bella Vista holds a unique place in the history of solar photovoltaic (PV) technology globally. It was here in April 1984 that Richard Hansen, President of EAF, introduced a small solar PV system combined with a micro-finance payment plan. This innovation helped create a worldwide movement to advance solar home systems (SHS) with micro-finance.  Local youths from Bella Vista learned about solar and became employed as solar technicians. Bella Vista is where Dr. Harish Hande, one of EAF's directors visited as a graduate student from the University of Massachusetts Lowell, a field visit that inspired him to launch SELCO India a world renowned solar company that has electrified over 400,000 households in India. So the Bella Vista school project is special to EAF because this is connected with our solar roots! 

After decades, the electric utility lines finally reached Bella Vista, however due to frequent power outages throughout the Dominican Republic and in Bella Vista, school activities lack consistent access to electricity. This project will install a 4kW PV system. The system will provide a source of back-up power for priority loads when the utility power is out and it will lower electrical consumption from the utility grid when the power is on. In addition to providing a valuable clean energy system, the project will advance technical education. As the Dominican Republic builds new schools, in today's competitive world there needs to be technical education, including training in information technology and energy technology. The project will be an ongoing demonstration of PV technology to power computers and other needs, while also incorporating educational presentations for the students.

A University of Massachusetts Lowell (UML) student team from the Masters in Solar Energy Engineering program is also involved with the Bella Vista school project. This includes the opportunity for the UML students to participate in the installation as part of a one-week service learning activity in Bella Vista. This collaboration offers educational benefits for the UML students, the local technicians, and the Bella Vista students. This project engages two local Dominican enterprises; Solarwave for logistics, and Energylight for the technical installation. Using local enterprises ensures the long term sustainability of the system and project.

The 4kW PV system was successfully installed and you can view some photos below.

 

Mariposa center for girls

In 2014 the EAF supported the installation of a 10kW hybrid PV system at the Mariposa Center for Girls in Cabarete, Dominican Republic. The Center for Girls, a program of the Mariposa DR Foundation, provides educational and empowerment activities for Dominican and Haitian girls to create sustainable solutions to end generational poverty.

The PV system is an essential investment in support of their programs by reducing their monthly expenses and providing back-up power. The PV system has 44 solar PV modules and two inverters that are interconnected with the electrical grid.  One inverter is a 5kW Solectria inverter that receives electricity from 24 solar modules and injects this electricity into the electrical grid. The other 20 solar modules charge a bank of batteries that is connected to an Outback hybrid inverter that can draw from the batteries to provide back-up power for priority loads during power outages or it can inject electricity into the electrical. 

This PV system has been able to completely eliminate the electrical bills of the center. In 2015 they actually received a check for almost $200 from the electric company for excess electricity injected into the electrical grid. With a one time investment in a solar PV system the Mariposa DR Foundation no longer needs to raise money each month to pay for the electrical bill.

 

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Energy Access Foundation, Inc. is a US 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.

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