SOLAR FOR SCHOOLS IN DOMINICA
Sextant, Construction for Change, Expedia Group, and Digicel Dominica team up to bring solar to schools in Dominica
Hurricane Maria left 99% of Dominica without power. It resulted in loss of life and damage to critical infrastructure, including the island’s schools. Students had their education and routines disrupted, many being forced to travel long distances to different schools and attend at reduced schedules.
More than a year after Hurricane Maria made landfall, Dominica remained in urgent need of reliable and resilient power. With the potential for diesel shortages, landslides, and flooding, generators were not a sustainable solution. In the event of another hurricane or natural disaster, solar powered systems will keep the lights, fans, and refrigerators running, and allow local residents to power communication devices – turning the schools into places of refuge.
Our volunteers worked to bring solar power to six schools in Dominica. These schools – Castle Bruce, Atkinson Primary School, Atkinson Light House School, Sineku Primary School, Concord Primary School, and Salybia Primary School – were identified as high priorities by Prime Minister Skerrit after Hurricane Maria hit. They are located on the east coast of the island, which was vulnerable even prior to Maria, and is home to the last remaining indigenous population, the Kalinago Tribe, with the most at-risk youth.
Digicel (Dominica) Ltd. first rehabilitated each of the schools, ensuring that new roofs and structures were appropriately reinforced. An assessment of each facility was completed in the summer of 2018, and the solar installation began in November. Our volunteers worked with local laborers to complete the work, and ensured facilities staff can effectively manage the systems moving forward.
These systems ensure a reliable, sustainable source of energy for the schools and the communities they serve in the event of another hurricane or natural disaster.
"I am the one that is proud to know you guys and very grateful for everything you are doing, not only in PR, but in the Caribbean. I got to see first-hand the work of Sextant Foundation and Construction For Change at a school in Dominica with Expedia. You should see how thankful those kids and the whole community are for you guys."