Early success for the founders of The Fuller Center for Housing was achieved in their 20s. Yet even at a young age, they recognized their fortune wasn’t resulting in happiness for them so they submitted their wealth to serve in ministry. Their journey led them to establish an affordable housing campaign worldwide and, ultimately, transformed millions of lives. Now on their next journey the are experimenting with solar for nonprofits.
In 1968 Millard and Linda Fuller decided to move to Koinonia Farm where they would work with Clarence and Florence Jordan. Together they began a new venture developing a 501c3 non-profit, Koinonia Partnership Housing, which developed into “Fund for Humanity”. They then completed 27 Partnership Houses before going to the mission field in Africa.
After building over 100 homes in Africa the Fullers saw a chance to grow Partnership Housing and The Fund for Humanity and returned to Koinonia Farm. At this point in September 1976, they formed Habitat for Humanity with their first meeting taking place in a worn converted chicken barn at Koinonia Farm.
Even after the passing of Millard in 2009, Koinonia and The Fuller Center for Housing continued the mission that was started back in 1968. Today they are still continuing the legacy with the faith-driven and Christ-centered organization that develops innovative partnerships with individuals and companies in an unrelenting quest to provide adequate shelter for all people in need worldwide.
Lately, their work has focused on building and rebuilding homes hurt by natural disasters like hurricanes and tornadoes. With this new solar energy system, they will be able to help even more people and families!
Their 7.8kW solar energy system is expected to produce 10,727 kWh in its first year of production, which is equivalent to 5,515 trees planted. This year alone the solar energy array is expected to save the facility $1,278.45. Simultaneously producing 10,727 kWh of energy during its first year of production.
This solar energy addition was made possible thanks to partnerships with Georgia Interfaith Power and Light (GIPL) and Southface Institute. The Fuller Center for Housing received a no-interest loan from GIPL in addition to a GoodUse Grant from Southface Institute. Along with these partnerships, The Fuller Center for Housing also received a grant for the energy efficiency upgrades that they had completed in 2020. Together, all of these sources will contribute to the facility’s funding and advance its objective. The key collaborations between these organization has led to this success story of solar for nonprofits.
Ryan Lafigliola at The Fuller Center for Housing explains, “GIPL played a crucial role in making this possible for us. Combined with a Southface GoodUse grant, we’re able to purchase this solar system without the use of any donor dollars and to repay the GIPL loan entirely out of the energy savings. As a non-profit serving the world’s poor, taking care of our own building is often the last thing on our minds.
But with GIPL’s help, we’re able to not only make this improvement to our facility but to actually save money over time that will allow us to serve even more families — all while lessening our environmental impact. We use a no-profit, no-interest loan when we build homes with folks, so the fact that we’re on the beneficiary side of exactly that type of arrangement this time seems especially appropriate.”
Throughout the lifespan of the system, The Fuller Center for Housing will save approximately $62,000 due to their solar energy system. This means that their new solar array will not only save them on their utility costs now, but also for years to come. Allowing them to continue their great work for future generations. Solar for nonprofits is a win win win situation as all parties are saving money, doing good for the environment, and serving the community.
Projects like these are a passion of ours and we are proud to be a part of this one. At Creative Solar USA anytime we can join together with organizations to create a greener and brighter future, we’re all in!