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 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 now face then we would welcome your time and skills.
1. Grant applications
Can you help us draft grant applications to the 6th round of the GLA’s London Community Energy Fund (LCEF)? This work will take place in the next four weeks as applications have to be submitted to the GLA by mid-January 2023.
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.
2. 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.
3. Operations and management (O&M) of SE24 portfolio
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.