Special to the Gazette
Spontaneous Celebrations, a community arts center in Jamaica Plain, MA, is the recipient of a $25,500 TernSOLAR challenge grant from Tern Foundation, based in Massachusetts. The funds will support the addition of solar panels on the roof of the community center, to be installed by Resonant Energy. To match the grant, Spontaneous Celebrations needs to raise an additional $25,500 from the community. The remaining cost of the project will take advantage of the ‘Direct Pay’ 30% reimbursement provision of the newly implemented federal Inflation Reduction Act, supporting nonprofit organization’s ability to invest in solar installation.
The proposed array is 44 panels, totaling 18.9kw, and covers the entire southwest-facing portion of the building’s sloped roof. The array’s production will cover roughly 87% of the building’s electricity usage. Over its twenty-five-year life, the array’s CO2-equivalent reduction will be comparable to preserving 19 acres of forest.
The roots of Spontaneous Celebrations are in the Stop the Highway movement and the annual Wake Up The Earth Festival. “We have always been working to protect the environment and mitigate climate change. Installing solar panels and generating clean renewable energy locally is an essential next step for our organization and community,” says Jennifer Jones, a neighbor and volunteer who is helping manage the project.
Community members who want to help Spontaneous Celebrations meet the TernSOLAR grant’s challenge can donate at spontaneouscelebrations.org or mail their contributions to Spontaneous Celebrations 45 Danforth St. Jamaica Plain, MA 02130, or attend the Sol Fest Fundraiser Party on Friday August 11th at 6pm to 11pm at 45 Danforth St.
The mission of Spontaneous Celebrations is to create and sustain a community cultural life that unites and empowers people for positive change through the arts; to produce seasonal celebrations in the Jamaica Plain and Roxbury neighborhoods; and to maintain a Community Cultural center for all.
They produce the Wake Up The Earth Parade and Festival in Jamaica Plain every May and the Lantern Parade around Jamaica Pond in October. These festivals and the workshops to prepare for them inspire, entertain, and educate the community. They also have Friday night pot-lucks and special events throughout the year open to everyone. Their building at 45 Danforth St is available at affordable rent for diverse and multicultural artists and community groups.
Tern Foundation’s TernSOLAR challenge grant program is designed to expand renewable energy use in Massachusetts communities, making solar technology more accessible to nonprofit organizations. Grants are offered to dynamic nonprofits whose leaders engage creatively with their communities, and consider future generations and the natural environment in their strategic priorities and sustainability planning. Since 2010 Tern Foundation has funded 21 solar projects and associated environmental education initiatives.
Resonant Energy is a Boston-based solar provider with a mission to build wealth in Environmental Justice communities through solar power. Resonant develops projects for nonprofits, houses of worship, affordable housing providers, and low-income homeowners in Massachusetts.