Source: Press Release 4/19/2014

Green Mountain Energy Sun Club Donates to Girl Scouts Education Program

Bayview, TX, April 17, 2014 -- The Girl Scouts of Greater South Texas today unveiled its first solar education program in conjunction with a new solar-powered pavilion at Camp Bayview, the result of a $35,000 donation from the Green Mountain Energy™ Sun Club™. As the first Girl Scout troop in South Texas to introduce hands-on activities for learning about how solar energy works, the Girls Scouts of Greater South Texas are at the forefront of educating young girls in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM), and giving them the tools to build brighter futures for themselves. Through the program, scouts from ages 5-17 can earn a "Solar Champion" patch.

The 7.5-kilowatt solar array comprised of 30 panels and covering 600 square feet on the top of the structure will help power the camp's cabins, pool and other facilities, while also providing shade for outdoor learning programs. A solar array of this size can generate an estimated 11,100 kilowatt-hours of pollution-free energy and avoid an estimated 13,100 pounds of carbon dioxide (CO2) each year - that's like not driving 14,700 miles.

To personalize the solar education program, the Sun ClubŪ worked with Girl Scout staff to design the Solar Energy Patch Program, which is part of the Girl Scouts' STEM initiative as well as Green Mountain Energy's first such collaboration with Scouting. Upon completing the program, which ranges--based on age-level-- from observing experiments on how plants use solar energy to building a solar-powered oven, girls are awarded the "Solar Champion" patch to wear on their uniforms. Details about the program will be available on the Girl Scouts of Greater South Texas website.

"We are so excited to be working with the Sun Club to not only save the council money that can be put into use for more programming, but to be able to offer education on Solar Energy to our Girl Scouts," said Danielle Altenburg, director of fund development for the Girl Scouts of Greater South Texas. "Girl Scouts is about teaching the girls relevant topics that apply to today, and solar energy is a hot topic that we can teach the girls in a fun and exciting way."

On a mission to help girls build courage, confidence, and character, the Girl Scouts of Greater South Texas welcomes girls from ages 5-17 across 26 counties throughout South Texas to participate in various camps and other programs that inspire the highest ideals of character, conduct, and patriotism. The Sun Club is a unique program enabling Green Mountain Energy Company and its employees, customers and supporters, including those in the Rio Grande Valley, to donate solar power to non-profits like The Girl Scouts of Greater South Texas.

"Incorporating solar energy into the operations and activities at Camp Bayview reduces electricity costs for this non-profit organization while bringing new learning experiences to scouts pursuing the Solar Champion patch," said Tony Napolillo, Sun Club Program Manager, Green Mountain Energy Company. "As renewable energy becomes an increasingly important resource to help us power our homes and businesses, it's more important now than ever that our future leaders - students across the country - understand both the impact and necessity of cleaner energy sources."

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