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About Nebraskans for Solar
Nebraskans for Solar (NFS) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization founded in January 2012. We work with allied nonprofits and agencies, schools, businesses and individuals to advance renewable energy in our state and to raise awareness about the economic and environmental benefits of renewable energy to our local communities.
Nebraskans for Solar Board of Directors 2021
Leo Arens, President
Brenda Moskovits, Co-President Elect
Louis Lester, Co-President Elect, Energy Efficiency/Load Management Projects Coordinator
Ken Deffenbacher, Past President, Treasurer
Helen Deffenbacher, NFS Executive Director, Nebraska Solar Schools Facilitator, Grants Writer
Donnis Arens, Nebraska Solar Schools Program volunteer
Logan Smith, Creighton University student representative
Max Markuson DiPrince, Creighton University student representative
Syed Ali, Nebraska Solar Schools Program volunteer
David Corbin, Former Nebraskans for Solar Board of Directors member, Volunteer NFS Facebook Editor
We Sponsor Two Programs
Green Watts for Good
We partner on the installation of photovoltaic (PV) projects with Nebraska food pantries, homeless shelters, children’s homes and other nonprofit organizations that focus on food and housing security in our communities.
Our current partnering nonprofits include No More Empty Pots in North Omaha, Heartland Hope Mission in South Omaha, Masonic Eastern Star Home for Children in Fremont, and Seventy Five North Corporation in the North Omaha Highlander Neighborhood, a Purpose-Built Community.
Previously we partnered with Habitat for Humanity of Omaha on the installation of solar hot water systems on 4 Habitat homes in North and South Omaha and the Benson Neighborhood, but now we install PV systems only.
We request matching funds from partnering nonprofits but do not require them.
Learn more about our Green Watts for Good projects here.
Nebraska Solar Schools
Nebraska Solar Schools is a Nebraskans for Solar program that has its own website. The purpose of our Solar Energy Education & Development Program is to provide resources for K-12 teachers to facilitate integration of renewable energy education into their classrooms or after-school programs. Resources are also provided for those who want to install a photovoltaic (PV) system at their schools.
Grant-Funded Projects: Free Solar Energy Kits
In April 2019 the Nebraska Environmental Trust awarded a $31,250 grant to Nebraskans for Solar to fund Nebraska Solar Schools’ project of providing National Energy Education Development (NEED) Solar Energy Kits to K-12 schools requesting them. During the 2019 to 2020 academic year, 64 kits were awarded to schools all across the state. Funds remain in the grant for about 40 kits. Most of the curriculum materials are reusable and so the kits can be used by multiple teachers at each school. Replacement kits for consumable materials are available from NEED at a fraction of the cost of the main solar energy kits.
In March 2020 Nebraskans for Solar received a Facebook Community Action Grant to support the Nebraska Solar Schools program. The $10,000 grant specifically will provide schools in Sarpy County that request them with NEED Solar Energy Kits for enhancement of STEM programming.
The free kits will remain available until April 30, 2021 or for as long as grant funds last. Learn more about our Nebraska Solar Schools program here, or visit the website: www.nebraskasolarschools.org
Nebraska Solar Schools Advisors / Mentors Wanted
We seek solar technology experts from Nebraska utilities and solar energy businesses to serve as mentors to schools in your local community that have been awarded a National Energy Education Development (NEED) Solar Energy Kit through our Nebraska Solar Schools Education & Development projects funded by grants from the Nebraska Environmental Trust and the Facebook Foundation. Volunteer work might include a classroom presentation, assistance with a project or activity, or a tour of one or more solar projects, for example. If you would like to volunteer, please contact Nebraska Solar Schools Facilitator Helen Deffenbacher at firstname.lastname@example.org
Our General Focus Areas Include:
- Green Energy
We support and provide information and resources on all types of green energy, including solar, wind, geothermal, hydropower, energy efficiency and energy conservation.
We provide news and resources for all ages at our events, on our websites and Facebook Page and through our electronic newsletters. We sponsor, or co-sponsor with allied organizations, an ongoing series of free educational events for all ages, including workshops, presentations and solar tours. In addition to all forms of green energy, topics of interest include community economic development through renewable energy projects, green energy jobs, electric vehicles, carbon sequestration through regenerative farming, decarbonization, climate action by all ages and its environmental and economic benefits for communities everywhere.
Nebraskans for Solar is a SHAREOmaha member. Click the image to link to our Page.