Category Archives: Blogs



Verde Elementary School Sees the Light

Energy Conservation Program Manager Julio Arroyo is always looking for ways to save energy for the West Contra Costa Unified School District. When Julio found an opportunity to implement a major lighting retrofit at Verde Elementary School with the help of the SmartLights Program, he knew taking the opportunity was the right decision.

Verde Elementary is a K-6 school in North Richmond situated on 8 acres of land, with an enrollment of about 320 students. On the school’s website, Principal Eric Acosta-Verprauskus describes the environment as “a collaborative network of thinkers focused on high achievement and embracing the whole child so that students grow academically and socially in a safe and positive environment to become college graduates, leaders, and lifelong learners.” CESC has collaborated in the past with Verde Elementary via the Family Sustainability Project. The school has been a destination of the Prescott-Joseph Center’s Breathmobile ®, which refers clients to our Healthy Homes Program.

Next it was time for CESC to help improve the school’s energy efficiency. The SmartLights Program performed a lighting assessment for the school and put together a detailed report outlining the projected cost, rebate and energy savings of the project, as well as the recommended lighting replacement measures. Contractors then came in and installed the lights to specifications, with the school receiving an up-front rebate to reduce the cost. Now, the school has replaced its fluorescent lights with new, energy-efficient lighting in its gym, classrooms, and library. The exterior and parking lot lighting was also replaced, a change which Julio explained “adds an element of safety for our maintenance staff that we didn’t have before.”

Julio Arroyo showing off new library lighting at Verde Elementary School

When you tour the newly lit school grounds, the impact of the bright, uniform lighting is immediately clear. Julio was particularly pleased with the new look of the library, which the lights show off to great effect.

 

Julio appreciated the instant rebates that SmartLights offered, which “allowed us to put more energy efficiency measures into place.” Thanks to the new, efficient lighting system, the school will now save an estimated $13,766 per year on its energy costs, a win for the district and a win for students.

Do you know of a school or business that could benefit from an energy upgrade? Contact the SmartLights program!

The Power of Relentless Optimism

By Martin Bond, CESC Executive Director

On January 20, 2017, President Donald J. Trump took office, while activists here in California organized protests and marches against his administration in which huge crowds participated.

I believe him a remarkably poor fit for the office of president. I am against most of his policies, his lack of empathy, and his hate-filled tirades in speeches and on Twitter. As someone who works with vulnerable communities and encourages clean energy, I find President Trump is in direct contradiction to what I do and talk about every day.  It would be easy to give up and give in to despair and fear. I will not. I have faith in the American people to not give in to an autocrat. I choose to take a positive view; change can be effected by a focused, relentless effort to make an impact towards a better world.

As President Trump said himself, we cannot be all talk and no action. Complaining about his policies to other like-minded friends doesn’t help. Protests, marches, and complaints are important, yet alone they will not effect change in him, or the world. I as an individual, and we as a community, can do more than just talk.

We can act by:

* Leading by example to support the very groups coming under attack: immigrants, Muslims, women, and people of color.  We need to protect those most vulnerable among us, because once it is OK to hurt them, who will be next?

* Continuing to combat climate change through our choices in: transportation, (electric vehicles, bikes, mass transit), purchasing energy (renewable sources, purchasing ‘green energy’ from our utilities), and how we live (buying local, participating in our communities). Climate change is an existential threat to our civilization, and we can still make an impact with the choices we make toward reducing greenhouse gas emissions.  

* Taking control of our attitudes and choices we make every day. We can choose to see the good in our neighbors, the humanity in immigrants escaping violence, and the opportunities in the challenges we are facing today.

* Joining groups and communities of like-minded individuals to effect change in the world.

I need to be strong and not lose myself into despair or apathy. I can make a difference and build a better future. However, I have to act. One by one, first in small groups, then in large, we will build a community to fight for a better world.

I will remember to have gratitude for the good parts of my life, my family, my friends, and this great organization I am fortunate enough to be a part of.

I know these times, this administration, and this president are not permanent. Policies being made right now can be overturned and will not affect us forever. The actions of this president are not normal behavior, and many people are fighting against his recent policies.

I have work to do. We will get through these tough times. We will get through it, together.

Good News for Oakland Home Repair

 

Community Energy Services Corporation is pleased to announce that the Callison Foundation and the Wells Fargo Foundation have made new grants in support of CESC’s Oakland Home Repair program for 2017. The Oakland Home Repair Program brings needed home repair services to Oakland seniors. Several individual donors also gave in support of the program in 2017, and the Partnership Foundation, a current funder, also renewed its support.

In Alameda County, 45,000 housing units have moderate to severe physical problems (Alameda County Healthy Homes Department). Many Oakland residents lack the knowledge, strength or resources to make needed repairs or to hire a contractor to do the work, especially seniors on fixed incomes who may additionally be wary of strangers coming to their homes.  According to the Alameda County Community Development Agency, “As the number of seniors living in substandard conditions continues to climb in the City of Oakland it is imperative that we address the need for seniors to age in place.” Maricela Foster, Director of the agency, calls CESC’s Oakland Home Repair program an “exceedingly needed service.”

Oakland Construction Tech Jesús Ávila prepares for a kitchen repair

Served by a skilled and seasoned home repair team, the program made health and safety repairs for 17 senior households in 2015 and 12 in 2016 for a total of several hundred individual repairs. Repairs can include most types of plumbing, electrical and carpentry repairs, furnace and minor roof repairs, and the installation of safety features such as grab bars, handrails, and ramps.

“Oakland Home Repair is one of my favorite programs because I love to see seniors in my neighborhood getting the help they need for the home that they have worked so hard for,” says Program Assistant Jennifer Robles. Are you an Oakland senior who needs help with repairs? Contact Jennifer today to find out how to enroll in the Oakland Home Repair program.

Email: jennifer@ebenergy.org

CESC Supports Green-Collar Jobs, Part Two

Last week, we told you a bit about the role Community Energy Services Corporation plays in workforce development locally, and we profiled Bill Pittman, former construction intern with CESC’s Family Sustainability Project. The Family Sustainability Project has two parts: it helps low-income North Richmond residents through home renovation and other asthma environmental remediation services, and it brings workforce development to that neighborhood through internships. Over the past three years, twelve interns from North Richmond have worked alongside CESC staff to bring these asthma environmental remediation services to North Richmond. Along the way, they have acquired new skills while getting paid, received job-seeking support, and came away with a laptop computer.

Family Sustainability Project Intern Spotlight
In the summer of 2016, intern Anthony Williams of Richmond had just graduated with an AA degree in business administration from Contra Costa College when he heard about the opportunity for a paid administrative internship with CESC’s Family Sustainability Project. Anthony was interested in building up his admin skills.

CESC Administrative Intern Anthony Williams

CESC Administrative Intern Anthony Williams

As a CESC intern Anthony has gained those admin skills, and then some. He has learned the database for CESC’s residential programs, provided customer follow-up via letters and calls, and assisted in other clerical duties including filing and organizing. He’s pleased that he has beefed up his software skills. He’s learned most of Microsoft Office, especially Excel. He has also done client outreach, attended outreach events, and learned office etiquette.

Now 26 years old, Anthony started community college in Vallejo right after high school, but he was unmotivated and dropped out.  Anthony then had a number of part-time retail jobs, working at places like Walmart, Target, Starbucks, and Macy’s. He usually had at least two jobs at one time. Sometimes his work day went from 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. This situation was highly motivating for him. He knew he had to get an education if he wanted a better work situation. He moved to Richmond and enrolled in Contra Costa College, where he got an introduction to business, office skills, and how to work with people and groups.

Anthony was thrilled to get a paid internship after graduating, and he admits that it isn’t what he thought it would be. “I thought an internship would be unpaid. I thought I’d have to fetch coffee for the boss and water for the dogs. Instead, I feel like I’m one of the team here.” Since his internship is part time, it allows him to take classes at San Francisco State University, where he hopes to get a B.S. degree in management.

While he’s happy about the skills he is gaining in his internship, he loves the overall purpose of the organization (Anthony is featured in a video about working at CESC). He likes that CESC is helping low-income people get safer and healthier homes and save energy.

“I also like the management here and everyone we work with,” a situation that he admits tends to be uncommon. “Managers are very flexible and understanding. They act as mentors or coaches. If you have a problem, they’ll be with you every step of the way to help you solve the problem. And what you do doesn’t go unseen. The management here definitely let you know that what you’re doing is appreciated.”

Anthony hopes to continue in nonprofit work, ideally at CESC if an opportunity comes up. Do you want to learn more about CESC? check us out at ebenergy.org.

 

CESC Supports Green-Collar Jobs

Businesses need a trained workforce, and local residents need jobs. Community Energy Services Corporation (CESC) has an important role to play locally in bringing jobs—and training for good jobs—to people in the community. For over 10 years, CESC has had programs offering paid internships in the energy efficiency and home repair fields to people starting out or starting over.

Take for example CESC’s Family Sustainability Project in North Richmond. For the past three years, a total of twelve interns from that community have taken part in paid internships working alongside CESC staff members to help low-income North Richmond residents through home renovation and other asthma environmental remediation services.

Workforce development organizations like CESC partner Rising Sun Energy Center can help people remove barriers to employment and acquire skills that can get them their first job. CESC’s role is in the next step; CESC helps people go a bit further. According to Executive Director Martin Bond, “Many staff members have been hired from green workforce development programs at Laney College or Rising Sun.” The next step is to provide interns and new employees opportunities for on-the-job training for various marketable skills. You can become LEED-certified, you can become an energy manager, you can become a building operator, you can go into the trades with a focus on energy efficiency, or you can learn electrician or general contractor skills. You can learn not just how to install energy efficiency products, but also how to verify savings. You can learn about building shells, insulation, air sealing, or HVAC. These are skills that can lead into good-paying jobs.

Past interns at CESC have gone on to full-time jobs elsewhere, sometimes even at CESC itself, and sometimes internships clarify educational goals for people. CESC provides interns support in getting the next job or applying to school. Of the eleven interns in the Family Sustainability Project, five now have full-time jobs in the area, and four have gone on to college.

Family Sustainability Project: Intern Spotlight

CESC Construction Technician Bill Pittman

Former intern (and now employee) Bill Pittman of Richmond first heard about an opportunity for a paid internship in construction with CESC when a cousin told him about it in 2015. At the time, he had been unemployed for two years and was getting by doing odd jobs landscaping and other things. Bill, 52, is a high school graduate, but he wasn’t making it. He felt discouraged and worried that because he had been getting older and was “down so long” that he might never get up. He was homeless, he was couch surfing, and he wanted a steady job. So he applied for the internship, and he was accepted.

As a construction intern with CESC’s Family Sustainability Project, which combines a health and safety home repair program benefiting North Richmond with a workforce development program in the same neighborhood, Bill gained hands-on experience with plumbing repairs, carpet removal and hardwood floor installation, general carpentry, and house painting.

At first, Bill made it to work every day catching the bus from North Richmond. At the time, he had neither a driver’s license nor a car. After four months, CESC was so impressed with Bill’s progress and positive attitude that they offered him a full-time job as a construction technician, and he gladly accepted. Now he drives to work every day in his own car and has a real home in Richmond.

Since his internship days, he has continued to acquire new skills. He has learned how to install gas appliances and test them for carbon monoxide, how to test heating duct systems for leaks and how to repair them, how to install plumbing fixtures such as toilets, and how to interact with clients. His current goal is to continue to gain additional plumbing skills and to improve in all aspects of the job.

Bill now spends most of his time working with clients of Residential Energy Efficiency Services. Sometimes he also helps Jesús Ávila with the Home Repair program, the work he likes to do most because he loves helping the elderly. It makes him feel good. And “Jesús is a great mentor; he has taught me a lot.” Bill also has a lot of positive things to say about his training and his current supervision. “We have some outstanding bosses. They help you in all kinds of ways. The bosses here are patient and understanding. They work with you if you have a special situation.”

Bill is immensely grateful for the opportunity he has found at CESC to rejoin the workforce. After being down so long, he says that “now I feel that I can go a little higher.” He loves that he now has a home and a car and can afford doing things with his children and grandchildren.

Look for a spotlight on intern Anthony Williams next week.

 

Society of St Vincent de Paul Shines a New Light

Executive Director Melanie Anguay at the Society's thrift store

Executive Director Melanie Anguay at the Society’s thrift store

The Society of St Vincent de Paul in Pittsburg needed help last year with their building’s lighting. Dark corners and inconsistent exterior lighting compromised the facility’s safety, and the lighting inside had been replaced haphazardly over the years, making for a hodge-podge of different lighting types and color temperatures throughout the building.

“For us, lights equal safety,” Executive Director Melanie Anguay explained. With children on site in the daytime shelter, it was especially important to illuminate every dark corner in the building, and strong exterior lighting was needed to ensure that community members felt safe coming to the site for services. The on-site free health clinic also needed better lights for the healthcare professionals to do their work in.

When the Society added 400 square feet and needed to outfit the new space with energy-efficient lighting, they decided to take this opportunity to retrofit all of the center’s lights. Yet the Society needed help executing a large-scale lighting project. “We don’t have a facilities manager,” Melanie explained, “so things like this are hard to implement on our own.” CESC’s SmartLights program came to the rescue and helped the Society complete the project from start to finish, with a project manager to count the lights and suggest replacements and create a report to show the projected cost and energy savings.

Initially, Melanie was skeptical that the SmartLights program was for real. “It seemed too good to be true,” she explained. However, after exploring our website and reading stories of people we’ve helped, Melanie decided to move forward with the lighting project.

Melanie with St Vincent de Paul staff under the new lights

Once the project was approved, SmartLights replaced 121 fixtures with efficient LEDs, improving the facility’s lighting and saving the nonprofit over $300 a month on energy bills. SmartLights also provided a rebate to offset the cost.

Melanie was impressed with the contractor’s commitment to providing lighting that met the Society’s needs; he “helped us find the right lighting for our building,” she said. Melanie was also impressed with the HVAC services she received. “[The contractor] was professional and explained things clearly. I don’t have any HVAC experience, but thanks to [the contractor’s] explanation I was able to understand the purpose of the equipment. He even let me watch him install the controller. That was a fun learning experience that I’ve never had the opportunity to do in the past!” From a cost standpoint, Melanie was able to present the detailed, readable SmartLights report to her board with the return-on-investment figures, or ROI, right on the front page.

Nurse treats patient in the brightly lit exam rooms

Nurse treats patient in the brightly lit exam rooms

Touring the St Vincent de Paul facilities, Melanie pointed out the many changes to their facility thanks to the new lights. The exterior of the building is now well lit, as are the medical examination rooms, the thrift store warehouse, the dining room, and the offices. “It’s nice to know that there are no dark corners,” she says. Melanie is happy she found us: “There are so few companies that provide this type of service. Your organization went above and beyond.”

 

New Year’s Resolution: Earthquake Home Safety

By Janet Stephens

Are you worried about your family’s safety during an earthquake? You’re not alone. Earlier this year, I was inspired by Martin Bond’s blog about the “big one” to start thinking about what more I could do to stay safe during an earthquake. Ten years ago, I had my home bolted and braced, and I added shear wall in two rooms, since we were renovating anyway. Those were the right things to do to reduce the risk of major damage to the home itself, but what about its contents–mainly, me, my husband, and our cats?

go-bucket-image-1I promised my husband I would set up an emergency survival kit with water, food, and some first aid supplies. That was three months ago, and I haven’t gotten started yet. Until today, that is. I knew that I needed to break the task of earthquake preparation into smaller chunks. So I downloaded a document called “Preparing the Home Activity Guide” from the City of Berkeley web site, which has eight different activities to make a home safer in a disaster.

The first activity I am going to tackle is #2, “Put a flashlight and a pair of shoes where each person sleeps.” We have several flashlights, and it will be easy to put a flashlight in the top drawer of my night stand. It’s a simple measure that will take me just a few minutes. I’m aiming to take one measure each day between now and the New Year.

I can also already check off activity #7, “Inspect your water heater.” I know that our heater is already strapped to the wall, a measure that was required during our home renovation.

I think the most difficult measure for me is going to be #6, “Remove falling hazards over beds and play areas.” I heard that falling hazards are the biggest cause of injury during an earthquake. We have eight-foot-tall bookshelves in several rooms, and I know they’re not attached to the wall. I’m a klutz with a hammer or screwdriver. Luckily, my husband is very handy, and he can help with this. But what about those families that lack a handy person?

bookshelf-safetyThe answer: Berkeley Seismic Safety services from Community Energy Services (CESC). A licensed contractor, CESC can provide you with all the services you need to make your home safe in an earthquake. A small grant from PG&E and the City of Berkeley’s Fire Department are helping CESC offer these services free to Berkeley households, whether they are renters or owners. “Preparing your home for an earthquake could prevent many injuries and should be a part of every household’s plan. Through the City’s Berkeley Ready program, we’re partnering with our community to look at potential hazards in the home and to mitigate those before an earthquake,” according to David Brannigan, Deputy Fire Chief.

The program includes a preliminary assessment; a “go bucket” or emergency kit containing a fire extinguisher, emergency rechargeable flashlight, an emergency radio, and other items, a strong educational component including educational materials, and seismic safety upgrades such as securing large furniture, book cases, water heaters, and picture frames and mirrors to the wall.

The program will be able to serve about ten households without charge. If you’re not among the first 10 households to qualify for free services, you can still pay a reasonable fee and have the security of knowing you’re hiring experts to help make your home safe.

And that earthquake survival kit I promised my husband? I don’t think that will take very long. According to the Preparing the Home Activity Guide, I already have most of the supplies on hand; I just need to gather them and put them in an old backpack or bucket. Some of the items are a surprise: copies of important documents, photocopies of prescriptions, an extra pair of eyeglasses. I’m glad I downloaded the document.

Want to know more about the Seismic Safety Services and how you can get help preparing? Contact CESC.

Embracing the Advanced Energy Economy

By Hank Love, CESC Board of Directors

hank-love-picI’m the Executive Director of the American Jobs Initiative, a nonprofit organization that runs the American Jobs Project at the Berkeley Energy and Climate Institute. The American Jobs Project works with states to identify strategies to create well-paying jobs in advanced energy industries for communities at risk, including those who face changing energy economies.

I first got involved with Community Energy Services Corporation (CESC) when I met Executive Director Martin Bond at an event at which Van Jones was speaking. We started a conversation and discovered that we had a lot in common professionally. At the time, I was assistant director of an organization in Michigan very similar to CESC in that it offered energy efficiency and health and safety programs for low-income residents. I kept touch with Martin, and we had a conversation quarterly to exchange ideas. I provided some to tools to help CESC with its strategic planning process and eventually joined the CESC Board of Directors.

American Jobs in the Advanced Energy Economy
With the American Jobs Initiative, our ultimate goal is to decrease the embodied energy in products, increase the efficiency of energy-producing and consuming technology, and produce cost-effective clean energy to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Yet our strategy for achieving this goal is to focus on job creation in new industries. It’s now more important than ever to take our economic, jobs-based approach towards reducing GHG emissions through innovation and efficiency. Examples of advanced energy industries include renewables, energy efficiency, advanced materials, carbon fibers, advanced ceramics, and 3D printing. The U.S. excels in efficiency and innovation and can compete in these industries, but it cannot compete on prior-generation manufacturing. Those jobs will likely never return.

Benefits of the Advanced Energy Economy
We’re already starting to see the benefits of the advanced energy economy. Right now there are more U.S. jobs in renewable energy than in coal. Compared to the total number of jobs in the entire extractive fossil fuel industry, the number of jobs in renewable energy is smaller, but we are on our way to surpassing fossil fuel. Once people catch on they will fight to keep those jobs, and coal jobs can peacefully recede. You don’t have to convince people that climate change is real to convince them to fight to keep their jobs in solar.

Energy Efficiency in the Advanced Energy Economy
In the advanced energy economy, energy efficiency permeates everything. For example, suppose you want to install solar power and electric storage for your home or business. If you first make your building as efficient as possible, you can purchase the smallest and least expensive system that’s right for your building. Achieving energy efficiency first brings solar installation costs down. This principle is something tangible that everybody can agree on.

Promoting energy efficiency is not controversial; in fact, all states have some kind of energy efficiency initiatives. California, though, is the testing grounds for innovation in this area. For example, California has set very high standards for the energy efficiency of buildings, some of the strictest in the country. Yet often the state doesn’t necessarily do everything right first; California tries ideas out first and shares lessons learned with other states. So in that sense the experience of California builders informs policy in other states. 

The Economics of Energy Efficiency
When retrofitting a building for energy efficiency, that is, making changes to an existing building, any proposal has to make economic sense to the consumer. The payback period is the time in which the efficiency project’s cost savings equal the cost of the installation. Typically, for an upgrade to appeal to a business, the payback period for a project must be 2-3 years or less, and for a home, the payback time must be 5-7 years or less. Unfortunately, in energy efficiency retrofits, much of the low-hanging fruit has already been picked—inexpensive improvements that achieve great savings, such as installing new light bulbs. That means that in many cases, the payback time is much greater. This constraint forces innovation, which is one of the drivers of the advanced energy economy.

hank-love-pull-quoteThe Role of Nonprofits in Energy Efficiency
It’s incredibly important that nonprofit organizations like CESC exist. There are multinational corporations that run energy efficiency programs–but corporations have a profit motive. Nonprofits have a mission. I think it was Bill Clinton who said, “a nonprofit’s job is to put themselves out of business,” that is, to fix the problem. But it’s not just about what you do to get the job done, it’s also about how you do the job. Although doing things in a cost-effective way is important, the goal is not to squeeze out every nickel and spend the minimum time on doing it. It’s important to take time with people, to make sure they understand the measures you’re installing to make their home efficient. This is how CESC does its business. CESC gets a lot of compliments on its employees and on the care they take with clients. CESC is really a social enterprise, and I’m proud to be a director.

Are you interested in finding out how CESC can help your home or businesses?
Learn more at www.ebenergy.org

 

Lighting up Marin County Schools

CESC’s SmartLights program has made its reputation helping small businesses reduce their energy use, but schools, like businesses, use energy and worry when energy bills rise too high.


CESC recently had the opportunity to reduce energy use at three schools in Marin County’s Ross Valley School District: White Hill Middle School and Manor Elementary School in Fairfax, and Hidden Valley Elementary School in San Anselmo.

ross-valley-schools-statsWhen Bret Joyner, Director of Maintenance and Operations for Ross Valley School District, saw new bright lights installed in Redwood High School’s gym (LED sport high bay fixtures), he knew he wanted those same lights for Manor Elementary School, one of the schools in his district right down the street from Redwood High. Bret had looked into upgrading to LED lights several years ago, but wasn’t able to move forward with the project because the new lights were just too expensive. This time, though, he found the price of LEDs had come down significantly. Thanks to rebates from the SmartLights program, the project was even more affordable.

white-hill-gym-lightsThe retrofit at Manor Elementary, completed with the help of a rebate through SmartLights, was a success. Before the upgrade, Bret said,“People had been playing basketball in the dark—and the lights were on!” Thanks to the improved lighting, the school’s young athletes can see the court like never before. The new linear LED high bay lights are covered with a metal guard to protect against errant basketballs. The low-wattage lights are also saving the school approximately $1,000 a year. The change, Bret says, was immediately noticeable: “It was an amazing difference.”

Hidden Valley Elementary School’s gym is also looking brighter and saving energy thanks to the SmartLights program. The gym originally had metal halide lamps. SmartLights upgraded the lighting to low-wattage tubular LEDs (or TLEDs) on individual motion sensors which turn on only when the space is in use.

Joyner explained that this change means huge energy savings: before the retrofit, the lights were left on a lot, sometimes from 7 in the morning till 10 at night. Now, they are on about four hours a day, based on actual use. Bret notes that the gym also looks much brighter with the new lights: “It’s a significant difference.”

white-hill-hallwayAt White Hill Middle School, SmartLights changed out fluorescent lights with new, low-wattage TLED and LED Stairwell Radial lights. The school will be saving over $7,000 a year with its SmartLights retrofit. Classrooms are now well-lit, and school safety has also improved thanks to sensor-controlled LED lighting in outdoor hallways.

As a result of his positive experience working with the SmartLights program, Bret plans to retrofit the entire lighting system at all the schools he oversees.

Do you know of a school or business that could benefit from an energy upgrade? Tell them about CESC’s SmartLights program!

#Giving Tuesday

Dear CESC Community Member,

giving-tuesday-mash-upDiscouraged with the focus on consumerism of this time of year? Join the movement of #GivingTuesday. Instead of buying things, take this opportunity to become aware of the needs of others and, if you have the resources, to make a donation to a cause or an organization.

Low-income seniors are among those with the greatest needs. Everyone deserves a safe and healthy home, yet in Alameda County, 45,000 homes have moderate to severe physical problems. Many residents lack the knowledge, strength or resources to make needed repairs, especially seniors on fixed incomes who may additionally be wary of strangers coming to their homes. The result is unsafe structures that are dangerous to live in. CESC’s Home Repair Program makes homes safer and healthier for seniors who are having a hard time keeping up with repairs. It provides critical health and safety home repairs for low-income seniors at no charge. This program is a strategic intervention for seniors that helps create safe, healthy housing, making clients more resilient.

Help us serve more low-income seniors in 2017 with a donation, large or small. Your generous gift increases the number of households we are able to reach and helps Oakland seniors take care of their homes for their continued health and safety, peace of mind, and dignity.

We also welcome donations to support our general mission to promote resource conservation and safety by providing building improvements and education where the Bay Area lives and works. Our vision is a community living and working in safe, efficient buildings and empowered to conserve energy and other resources.

Thank you for being a part of our community and for thinking about the neediest among us this #GivingTuesday.

Warmest regards,

Martin Bond

CESC Executive Director