We are coming to Stockton this fall!

After a record-breaking summer, serving 15 cities in the Bay Area, we finally have the opportunity expand to the Central Valley.  We are launching California Youth Energy Service (CYES) in the Central Valley, starting with a fall program in Stockton. But this is just the start! In the summer of 2015, we will be expanding to 4-5 surrounding cities in San Joaquin, Merced, and Stanislaus counties.

Are you curious about where exactly in Stockton Rising Sun will be serving? Everywhere! We can provide a Green House Call to anyone that is a Stockton resident and pays a PG&E bill. There are no income qualifications – everyone is eligible, including home owners, apartment owners, and renters. Additionally, the best part is that the program comes at no cost to residents and will be running from October 27th to December 12th of this year.  We have hired local youth and young adults between the ages of 15 and 22 from Stockton’s high schools and colleges. We will be performing energy audits in homes, and all you need to do is register anytime throughout the program for your homes to receive no-cost audits, energy and water efficiency upgrades. To get a Green House Call, you can sign up at  Green House Call Sign Up, contact us directly at fong@risingsunenergy.org or call us on (510) 883-4015.

Rising Sun’s 2014 Staff Retreat

At Rising Sun Energy Center we strive to think of our annual staff retreat as an opportunity to continue to build a robust sense of connectedness and community amongst our staff. As a whole, according to Elena Foshay, Director of Adult Programs, and Julia Kim, Marketing and Development Coordinator, the retreat was a great opportunity for the staff to get to know each other better and to reconnect to the history and mission of Rising Sun, from Late Night Art at Green Gulch Zen Center to a hike and BBQ at Muir Beach.

rs_2014retreat

LATE NITE ART was a perfect forum to facilitate this process.  Adam’s leadership and guidance created a space where the staff of Rising Sun could let go of inhibition and share parts of ourselves in a novel and expressive way. We were able to tackle the questions of why we work for Rising Sun, what inspires us and challenges us in our job, what passion we bring to the table and what we need from each other in order to continue to grow and build stronger programs for our community in an innovative and exciting way. We spent time letting go, and letting others draw for us. We let in the ideas and stories of the people around us, and most importantly we had a lot of fun with each other! The collective creative process that LATE NITE ART fashioned was invaluable to our organization and added to the overall experience of the retreat.

dance2

Dancing and painting… at the same time? Now that was enlightening!

 

Painting together and trying to get to know each other was a really interesting experience. It completely removed the barriers that may exist in an office. Every single person in the room jumped in the game and let go their creativity.  – Nico, Collabriv Intern

chat

An opportunity to chat and be creative, all at once.

 

 

It was refreshing to see everyone work together in such a creative and collaborative way, and it was awesome to see us tie in our mission into a natural environment.  – Jennifer, Regional Outreach Manager

FINAL

And the final reward: a work of art that explained to us the benefit of working together as a team, irrespective of our differences or the shortcomings we thought we had.

 

 

 

The late night art was mind-blowing, it gave us the opportunity to let go of the limitations we felt both individually and as a group, and then release our inner creativity.It’s an engaging activity for both individuals and the organization at large.  – Toni, Collabriv Intern

Moving Forward and Breaking Records: CYES 2014

Our California Youth Energy Services (CYES) program achieved record-breaking impacts this year!  For seven weeks this summer, Rising Sun employed 132 young adults ages 15 to 22 as Energy Specialists or Leaders-in-Field-Training (junior managers), providing them with intensive training in energy efficiency and water conservation and equipping them with the knowledge and skills to perform Green House Calls.

At each Green House Call, which comes at no cost to the community members who receive our services, Energy Specialists assess the home for efficiency, install energy and water-saving equipment, and provide personalized recommendations for further savings.  Last summer, CYES operated sites in 10 cities and served 2,655 households. This year we expanded the program to 15 cities and smashed our goal of serving 3,750 households by serving over 4,300 homes!  Two sites beat the previously-held site record, hitting or exceeding 400 homes each!

To celebrate the hard work and great success of the CYES program, Rising Sun’s Leaders-in-Field-Training (LIFT) hosted an end-of-summer barbeque, bringing together the staff from every site that CYES operated in this summer.   Nearly 200 youth, Site Managers, and other Rising Sun staff gathered at the Joaquin Miller Park in Oakland on a beautiful sunny afternoon to have fun and acknowledge the meaningful impact that the entire CYES team made in our communities and for our planet this year.

CYES-1 CYES-2 Continue reading

Free Training to Start Your Green Career!

Rising Sun is actively recruiting for the next GETS training, which begins September 8th. We will be having our FINAL info sessions on Wednesday, August 6th and Wednesday August 20th at 1pm. The info sessions will be held at the offices of Rising Sun Energy Center located at 2998 San Pablo Ave, Oakland, CA 94702.

The Green Energy Training Services (GETS) program trains adults (Age 18+) for entry-level jobs in construction and building performance, and prepares graduates for entry into union apprenticeship programs.  During 6 to 8 weeks of training, GETS provides classroom, hands-on, and field training on the basics of construction and building science, job site safety, use of diagnostic tools used to perform energy audits, and installation of energy efficiency measures in homes.  GETS training will take place in Berkeley,Monday-Friday from 9:00am-4:00pm.

To qualify for GETS, individuals must:

  • Have a high school diploma or GED
  • 8th grade reading/writing/math ability
  • Have legal eligibility to work in the U.S.
  • Be low-income or unemployed
  • Be able to attend training every day
  • Be motivated to find employment in the construction industry

Interested applicants should attend an information session to learn more about the program, complete an application, and take a math and reading test. 

GETS training is FREE, and is the first step in a green career helping home- and building-owners save energy.  GETS graduates are prepared for entry-level positions as energy efficiency or weatherization installers and technicians, energy auditors, air sealers and insulation installers, building maintenance technicians, or HVAC technicians.  Some GETS graduates may also move on to union apprenticeships in the building trades.

After completing GETS, graduates receive ongoing case management and job placement services.  I work closely with graduates on polishing their resume and practicing job interview skills, and finding the right job or further training opportunities.  Graduates also participate in monthly alumni meetings, where they have the chance to network, learn about job openings, and continue building their technical skills.

Final Week Posts from Union City, Benicia, and Pleasanton

Union City

Union City Week 6 - full staff

This week is the last week we will be serving the citizens of Union City with Green House Call appointments. I am pleased to say that it has been an exciting summer filled with much joy and laughter. Our team is sad that it is our last week together so we are all cherishing the memories before the program comes to an end. We as a team loved reaching out to the community to provide a free service to clients that really appreciated all the work we have done. We hope everyone is enjoying the last few days of the program, and let the rest of your summer be filled with happiness.:)

-Emilio

 

Benicia

Benicia Week 6 - Happy site

We are so sad to see the end to our program coming, but we are proud to have accomplished over 214 Green House Calls. The team grew in their ability to solve problems and communicate effectively. Below is our team reaction when we found out our total Green House Calls thus far. We grew professionally and we met great people through this program, every member was vital to our success.

-Dharshini N.

 

Pleasanton

It is with both a heavy heart and a sigh of relief that I report the final week of CYES’s Pleasanton site. I could go on for pages about how much I enjoyed working with everyone at the site and how much I’ll miss them, but time is of the essence. As of today, we have proudly served over 270 homes. A true Cinderella story. Even now, my hands tremble as I type my last blog. Our youth continue to work diligently and efficiently even though tomorrow is their last day of Green House Calls. Some of our Energy Specialists are just getting started with high school while others are going off to college in different states. I hope they will all take with them the important experiences and memories they have made during their short time with Rising Sun. See you next summer!

-Kennan