Solar Energy Assures Bright Future for Charity

A Bristol charity that supports families following the loss of a child is benefiting from a solar energy system donated by the South West’s leading renewable energy specialist.

The Rainbow Centre provides counselling and therapy to children and their families affected by bereavement, life-threatening illness and cancer.

It has been chosen as the first UK charity partner by Solarsense, the North Somerset-based company that has installed renewable energy systems on everywhere from Bristol Zoo to the Glastonbury Festival site.

The company has just fitted nine solar photovoltaic panels on the Rainbow Centre's roof at Lilymead Avenue, Bristol. The solar array, which will generate over 2,000 kilowatt hours every year, will not only cut the charity’s electricity bills by about a third but also earn it money through the Feed-In Tariff incentive.

Centre director Angela Emms said: “The solar panels have generated more than 200 kilowatt hours of free electricity in their first month and earned us about £45 through the Feed-In Tariff. That’s enough to pay for one and a half sessions one-to-one with a counsellor or therapist for a child or parent.”

Jenny Stanley Smith, Charity Project Co-ordinator for Solarsense, said: “We are delighted to have been able to support the wonderful work of the Rainbow Centre by installing free solar panels and look forward to helping the charity in other ways.”

Solarsense also supports a number of other charitable projects including a Bristol-based charity working in Africa, For-Ethiopia. Three volunteers from Solarsense have just spent two weeks installing solar PV panels and vaccine fridges for the charity at health posts in a remote area of Ethiopia. The solar-powered fridges safely store vaccines for immunising children against potentially fatal diseases such as tuberculosis, polio, tetanus and diphtheria.

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