Rising Sun Celebrates GETS Spring Core Cohort Graduation

On Friday, May 15, 2015 Rising Sun Energy Center proudly hosted the graduation of its Green Energy Training Services (GETS) Spring Core Cohort. Ten graduates were acknowledged, celebrating the completion of a nine-week intensive training program. The ceremony was attended by approximately 50 guests, including family, friends, program funders, and Bay Area employers.

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Graduating class and Rising Sun Staff

GETS Core provides free training for green careers, case management, and job placement support to low-income adults, empowering them to achieve economic sustainability for themselves and their families, while having a positive impact on the environment. Graduates received powerful words of encouragement from Rising Sun’s Executive Director, Jodi Pincus, Director of Adult Programs, Elena Foshay, and Board Members, Patrick Brown and Tyi Johnson, a former GETS participant, herself.

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Keynote address from Patrick Brown

Elfren Aranas, the cohort’s class speaker, spoke passionately about the skills he mastered during the nine-week training intensive, bonds he forged with fellow participants, and the need of energy efficiency education and resources provided throughout the community. Aranas announced his own entrepreneurial venture, The Greywater Guys, a company he is founding, aimed at providing efficient installations of grey water systems in homes.

Elena Foshay, Elfren Aranas, Patrick Brown
Elena Foshay, Elfren Aranas, Patrick Brown

The end of the GETS Core cohort also marks the beginning of a two week elective on solar photovoltaic installation offered to adults looking to pursue a career in the solar industry. Class participants will receive in introduction to Solar PV Systems, hands-on training in solar installation, and guidance on pursuing employment in the industry.

 

About Rising Sun Energy Center

Rising Sun Energy Center is a 501c3 non-profit organization headquartered in Berkeley, California, operating throughout California, in Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Joaquin, Solano, and Sonoma counties. Rising Sun is a workforce development organization focusing on training, employment, and green career pathways for both youth and adults. Rising Sun Energy Center’s mission is to empower individuals to achieve environmental and economic sustainability for themselves and their communities. For information regarding Rising Sun Energy Center, please visit our website at http://www.risingsunenergy.org.

Bright Night 2015 – A Huge Success!

We at Rising Sun pride ourselves on working diligently to educate members of the public on useful ways to be most efficient at home and in their daily lives, and by also celebrating the hard work that our organization puts forth on a regular basis. Bright Night 2015 was an example of our effort to take a step back and honor Rising Sun’s commitment to creating sustainable communities within the Bay Area and beyond.

On Thursday, May 7, 2015, Rising Sun hosted our annual fundraising event, Bright Night, at the Ed Roberts campus in Berkeley, California. It was a wonderful celebration, presented by Pacific Gas & Electric Company, where we welcomed elected officials, corporate partners, community organizers, and individual supporters to join us in celebrating Rising Sun and raising funds for the organization, allowing us to deepen our work within the community.

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The event was attended by approximately 200 guests, and boasted over 80 amazing auction items, beautiful and tasty hors d’oeuvres catered by Work of Art Catering, a certified green business, beer and wine donated by Bear Republic Brewery and Barefoot Wine and Bubbly, delicious cupcakes donated by Teacake Bakeshop, and the smooth sounds of Latin Jazz band Jeff McNish and the Viento y Marea All Stars.

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Executive Director, Jodi Pincus-Cabrera, presented a powerful keynote address urging attendees to think critically about their roles in empowering and supporting communities of need, and was followed by the inspiring words of former program participants Faith Ndama and Cornel Martin, Eunice Garcia of Pacific Gas & Electric Company, and Rising Sun Board Members Mikhal Bouganim and Michael Balster.

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Bright Night was a wonderful success, providing Rising Sun the opportunity to start the conversation about ways we can better serve our community and build relations with community leaders already doing the important work of creating a more sustainable world.

Check out some pictures below!

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Corporate Sponsors: Pacific Gas & Electric Company, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Barbara and Gerson Bakar, Cooperative Center Federal Credit Union, SunRun, Bright Plain Renewable Energy, Business Professional Insurance Associates, Inc., Comerica Bank, Community Energy Services Corporation, Compass Financial Communications, The Greenlining Institute, Lance Reynolds, Sheet Metal Workers Local Union No. 104, Skeo Solutions, SunPower, and The Urban Farmer Store.

San Francisco Creative Community Comes Together To ‘Drop-a-Brick’ In California Water Conservation Movement

SAN FRANCISCO CREATIVE COMMUNITY COMES TOGETHER TO 

‘DROP-A-BRICK’ 

IN CALIFORNIA WATER CONSERVATION MOVEMENT

Rising Sun Energy Center Brings the Time-Honored

Tradition Of Dropping A Brick In The Toilet Tank to

California Toilet Flushers Statewide

SAN FRANCISCO, CA, (NOVEMBER 24, 2014) – With California in a water crisis, two San Francisco Bay Area non-profits have teamed up in a unique initiative to save California communities water. Rising Sun Energy Center, a leading green workforce development organization, and Project: Drop-A-Brick, a public service initiative providing water-saving devices to the public, will now be dropping bricks in toilets across California to save millions of gallons of water a year.

These are not regular bricks, mind you. The Drop-A-Brick product is a Silicon Valley take on the long-standing conservation tradition of placing a brick in the toilet tank to displace, and in turn, save water. Unlike a real brick, the Drop-A-Brick is an ecologically-designed and green-friendly brick that is light to ship, safe to use (it doesn’t destroy toilets like standard clay bricks) and consistently saves half a gallon on every flush.

The partnership will see Drop-A-Bricks being donated to Rising Sun Energy Center to install in California homes through its youth employment program, California Youth Energy Services (CYES). As part of a youth development and green jobs training program, CYES offers no-cost in-home energy and water education and hardware installation to homeowners and renters alike through its Green House Call service.

This comes at a time when California is desperate to save water in every way possible. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, toilets are the home’s biggest water waster, consuming 30% of water usage. The average toilet flush in California is a little more than one gallon over the Federal standard, meaning that California alone is needlessly wasting 106 million gallons of water daily. The Drop-A-Brick device is a simple, low-tech solution to a serious problem.

“Communities in Europe and Australia are provided similar water-saving devices by their local governments because it’s such a no-brainer – we waste more drinking water by flushing toilets than we do showering,” says Drop-A-Brick co-founder Gregory Hadden. “We believe that California residents also deserve a simple and inexpensive way to conserve water that doesn’t force people to replace their toilets – a major expense for many. Our partnership with Rising Sun makes it possible for Bay Area residents to start saving gallons of water every day, while saving money on their water bills.”

The relationship between the two organizations will extend beyond simple distribution of the Drop-A-Brick. Rising Sun’s adult training and employment program, Green Energy Training Services (GETS), which provides intensive job skills training to low-income adults with barriers to employment, is exploring opportunities to deepen the partnership by offering job training focused on the green production of rubbers and plastics, and connecting graduates with potential employment opportunities with an industry leading green manufacturing company, Level 2 Productions.

“As the water crisis in California continues to grow, we are looking to deepen our impact at both individual household and city-wide levels. Drop-A-Brick represents a fantastic opportunity for water savings through simple education and the installation of a water saving device,” says Jodi Pincus, Rising Sun’s Executive Director. “We believe that by partnering with Project: Drop-A-Brick, Rising Sun will be able to further its mission to empower individuals to achieve environmental and economic sustainability for themselves and their communities.”

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About Rising Sun Energy Center

Rising Sun Energy Center is a 501c3 non-profit organization headquartered in Berkeley, California, operating throughout California, in Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Joaquin, Solano, and Sonoma counties. Rising Sun is a workforce development organization focusing on training, employment, and green career pathways for both youth and adults. Rising Sun Energy Center’s mission is to empower individuals to achieve environmental and economic sustainability for themselves and their communities. For information regarding Rising Sun Energy Center, please visit our website at http://www.risingsunenergy.org.

About Project Drop-A-Brick

The Drop-A-Brick movement is the brainchild of a multi-agency collaboration between Tube Media International, Level2 Industries, barrettSF, and Pre-Future, four shops representing San Francisco’s advertising, manufacturing, and production industries. The movement is being self-funded through an Indiegogo program, with the goal of saving millions of gallons of water and to help those worst hit by the drought. Through Indiegogo, the bricks are being sold at cost and sponsors can donate bricks to communities devastated by the drought. [https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/drop-a-brick-in-your-toilet]. So far, press has called it “the cleverest crowdfunding campaign in history.”

Water Is Life – 2015 Urban Art Competition

Please join Rising Sun Energy Center for our “Water is Life: 2015 Urban Art Competition” on March 12th, showcasing art pieces by local talent focused on the issue of water conservation in an urban environment.

The event will offer guests the opportunity to vote for their favorite art piece and learn about water conservation while enjoying music, hors d’oeuvres, and beverages in Rising Sun’s head quarters.Urban Art pcard FRONT outlines

To submit your art, please click here.  You can find more details about the event here

Attendance is free, but your RSVP is required as we have limited capacity. Simply RSVP on our Eventbrite page

 

You can also connect to us on our Facebook event and signify your interest.

See you there

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Rising Sun Energy Center Announced as Energy Upgrade California® Grant Award Winner

Rising Sun is happy to announce that we have been named one of a select number of community-based organizations across the state to become an Energy Upgrade California Ambassador. We have been awarded a grant to develop and implement energy management outreach, awareness, and educational programs for our local community with an emphasis on reaching diverse and under-served populations. We will be partnering with Community Energy Services Corporation to implement this project.

This is part of Energy Upgrade California’s efforts to work with grassroots organizations and educate Californians about the simple steps they can take to better manage energy, save money, and make their homes more sustainable.

Graduates of Rising Sun’s adult Sales & Marketing training class will be representing Energy Upgrade California as Ambassadors at community events and meetings of community groups around the East Bay, educating the public on the benefits of conserving energy. Visitors at these events will receive helpful energy-saving tips and learn about additional information available on Energy Upgrade California’s website. Rising Sun will also be sharing tips and information through our website Facebook, and Twitter pages throughout the year.

We are really excited about this new partnership, as it will give us the opportunity to do something we love, educating people on energy and sustainability, while also allowing us to continue providing training and meaningful work opportunities to participants in our programs.

This is an excellent way to start 2015 and we are glad for the opportunity to share the thrill of this partnership with you!