Gift and Thrift Store Solar Barn Raising

Tapping volunteerism to realize a solar dream

The 62 kW solar array will save the Gift and Thrift Store, a non-profit resale store in the Mennonite tradition, $14,000 on its electric bill each year, all of which will directly benefit the global relief and development work of Mennonite Central Committee (MCC). A significant way to help the environment, over its 35-year lifetime the solar power system will offset 1,850 tons of carbon dioxide, equivalent to keeping 4,283 barrels of oil in the ground. The system was built with exclusively American-made equipment, ensuring high quality, durability and fair environmental and labor practices. 

Dozens of volunteers from the local Mennonite community stepped forward to install the solar power equipment safely and effectively with training from and under the supervision of qualified solar power installers. This type of solar barn raising is a model that other non-profit and faith-based organizations can use to make on-site solar power more affordable.


Note: energy monitoring displays can take 60 seconds or more to load.

The Challenge

Faith-based retailer wanted to put its values of creation care into action affordably

The Result

A solar energy system installed at a lower cost using volunteers in a “solar barn raising”