In 2013, Southface received a two-year grant to partner with a national nonprofit leader, the Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA). The BGCA Energy and Water Efficiency Program (BGCA EWEP) leverages our successful local Grants to Green program that has helped more than 155 nonprofits save more than $1 million per year in energy and water costs since 2008. Working with BGCA’s portfolio of facilities in the Southeast, the project intends to serve as a pilot to frame the scope, scale and structure of an ongoing strategy to support members of the larger national nonprofit community in their missions while reducing the environmental impacts of their facilities.
Now at the halfway point, Southface is helping BGCA “green” a portfolio of 14 clubs. In these facilities, the BGCA EWEP pilot will demonstrate the economic and environmental benefits of high-impact energy and water efficiency improvements. The program’s ultimate goals are to reduce club utility expenses by 20 percent annually and to improve conditions in existing facilities, so they may be better used to advance Boys & Girls Clubs’ core mission to “enable all young people, especially those who need us most, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens.” The scope of Southface’s work includes building characterization studies to understand operations and benchmark building performance; performance assessments of maintenance and repair, energy and water use and weather resiliency; and an implementation plan and subsequent leveraging plan to make use of available proximate resources such as utility rebates and local foundation grants. Southface then administers investment grant funding for the clubs to perform the work outlined in the implementation plan that may trigger leveraging opportunities. To date, assessments for 13 clubs in seven states have been completed and $303,186 has been awarded.
“Thanks, Thanks, Thanks for the new lighting. It’s a huge improvement. I love the fact when we are not using an area the lights turn off so we can save on our electric bill. I can see how we are going to save thousands over the years. The members are really loving the change. They are truly excited about the entire process.”