Volunteer for SE24

If you want to gain experience of working in a community energy group, or want to do something practical to help tackle the climate and energy crises we would welcome your time and skills.

SE24 is almost exclusively run by volunteers. All the Directors are volunteers.

We obviously employ skilled commercial contractors and experts to survey and install our solar and LED projects. We have a maintenance contract with Joju Solar. We also contract out our admin to a specialist service called Share Energy who support many community energy groups. We employ a Volunteer Manager and a LED project leader shared with SELCE.

But everything else is done by volunteers led by and supported by the Directors and our Volunteer Manager.

If you think you can help SE24 with any of the following, please e mail Dave Rinaldi, Volunteer Manager [email protected]

1. Project management

Can you help project manage the delivery of our projects?

Once we get project funding, we have to make the work happen.

On LED projects the project manager volunteer would work with SE24 and SELCE experts to carry out feasibility studies (eg LED lighting surveys) and if these show a project is viable to help manage the installation process.

On solar projects you would work with our partners RAFT to assess feasibility of putting solar PV panels on local schools.

This will involve managing relationships with our partner organisations (SE24/SELCE/RAFT), with school sites, local authorities, Department for Education, as well as consultants and contractors to ensure that the projects can be delivered on time and to budget.

2. Grant applications

Can you help us draft grant applications?

Using previous applications as a model, as a volunteer you would assist us with drafting applications for

a) capital funding to install new LED lighting projects in local schools

b) funding for us to perform feasibility surveys in local schools. 

You would liaise with experienced colleagues in SE24 and SELCE who provide technical, financial and editorial support and supervision as necessary.

3.  Operations and management (O&M) of SE24 portfolio

Can you help us monitor our installations to keep them performing?

Our volunteers would work with Joju Solar (our solar O&M contractor), and site owners to ensure our seven solar installations are performing as intended. 

If any unplanned maintenance is needed e.g. generation faults identified by Joju’s online monitoring system, or a site needing to move panels to enable roof repairs, the volunteer would liaise with Joju and site representatives to ensure speedy access to perform repairs.

As part of SE24/Joju planned maintenance, you will also help with annual site inspections working with Joju and site representatives to review how the equipment is performing and discuss issues that may affect generation.

4.  Financial modelling

Can you help us assess financial feasibility of new projects?

SE24 uses Excel spreadsheets to estimating the economics of solar PV and LED projects.  These models use a range of data – eg solar yield assessments from Joju, electricity savings for LED lighting surveys, capital, maintenance and other running costs, shareholder repayments etc. 

We would welcome financially skilled volunteers to help us use these models in feasibility studies, to monitor them during project implementation and using project feedback to improve the models etc.

5. LED lighting surveys

Can you help us prepare for future LED projects?

SE24 works across South London to encourage energy conservation measures. One aspect of this is retrofitting LED lighting. We completed our first LED lighting projects in 2021 and 2022, at local schools. We are currently (in 2024) awaiting decisions on grant applications to work in several more Southwark Schools. and are finalising work in a 3rd school.

Volunteers can help us in two ways: completing the initial LED lighting surveys, using bespoke software on an iPad Air using REtrolux software, and online/desk work follow up to to the surveys.

The software enables SE24 to estimate the cost of the retrofit and the likely savings in electricity costs and carbon emissions over time. We use this information to secure ‘buy in’ from the site, and to understand the capital costs that we need to raise from our next community share offer, and future grant funding. The same information is also used to procure the services of LED installers