SANTA CRUZ SOLAR PROJECT

This is the road we drove up on as far as we could in a four wheel drive truck. It is newly cut out of the hillside and we are the first vehicle to use it.

Tim and Espaldo and the panel

When the truck ground to a halt the villagers arrived with horses and mules for us.

The panel and tools were carried by the villagers. The two 6 volt batteries got a mule ride.

The school was still in session when we arrived.

I was amazed that the older children were learning about Pythagoras’ theorem. They take education very seriously in this village.

Some of the students. they were studying the. PYTHAGOREAN THEOREM! I was lost!

Discussions on the practicalities of the installation

Next we all had to decide where everything was going to be installed.

Tim one of our founding members explaining about the solar panel. The mayor and two other men spoke some English. That was a surprise too.

Everybody is riveted and wondering how it's going to work

Setting the solar panel up on a roof that was at the best angle to the sun.

Now to decide how and where to install the lights. Two went in the school which is quite large room and this is Oswaldo, the technician we are training, and the village mayor balancing on the ladder while installing a light socket.

places are akward to get and the beams only just wide enough

But there it is, nicely fitted.

One went in the teacher’s kitchen.

Another went in the toilet although we were stretching our resources with that one.

This one works

And so does this one.

The last one went in the teacher’s room where the batteries were installed, away from curious students.

What happened next was also a surprise, the mayor’s wife had cooked us a very tasty meal to show their appreciation. Left to right we have Pam Pennington, Miguel Rodriguez, Tim Pennington, Darwin our driver, Daniel Pinto who is a health worker and our contact with the villages, and Oswaldo Morales, trainee technician.

That's our way out.

Then we had to make our way back down the trail before the afternoon rains they were expecting swept in.

It was an exciting and satisfying day and a memory to treasure. Thank you Santa Cruz.