Sustainable Solar Energy in Santa Elena

Started April 2017 and ongoing (anticipated end date April 2019)


  • Plenty Belize
  • Barefoot College
  • Caribbean Community Climate Change Center
  • Ya’axche Conservation Trust
  • Maya Mountain Research Farm
  • Ministry of Rural Development
  • Ministry of Energy
  • Santa Elena Village


  • Barefoot College
  • Government of India
  • Government of Belize
  • Plenty International

Project Goal

To promote the demonstration, development and transfer of low carbon technologies at the community level, by empowering Santa Elena to reduce GHG emissions by capacity-building and installation of renewable and sustainable energy systems.

Successes and Accomplishments

  • Two women from Santa Elena trained as Barefoot Solar Engineer, ie a solar technician who builds/solders charge controllers and solar lanterns.
  • The engineers are women
  • The engineers are Mayan from a remote village in Toledo
  • The engineers are not formally educated at secondary or tertiary level
  • Santa Teresa has a Solar Board that reports to Ministry of Rural Development that seeks to sustain the systems into the future.

Good Practices

  • Female Solar Engineer in Village
  • Solar Power Board puts control in the village
  • Steering Committee Meetings open to the village
  • Training both in India and in Belize
  • Rural Development assists solar Board