Jamaica: Readyboard Installation Ceremony

Some of the energy efficient lighting options promoted by JPS at the Community Wellness Fair in St. Catherine.
Some of the energy efficient lighting options promoted by JPS at the Community Wellness Fair in St. Catherine.

JPS/JSIF Wellness Fair

On April 28th, 2017 the USAID SRUC team attended the Jamaica Public Service (JPS)/Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF) Community Wellness Fair in St. Catherine. JPS and JSIF host 2-3 wellness fairs per year to engage current and potential customers in high loss areas (Red Zones) in Jamaica. Wellness fairs bring together a variety of services for Jamaican communities including free health checks, dental services, and government services into one location alongside JPS and JSIF to foster the relationship between the communities and the two organizations.

At the event, community residents bring with them their customer details or can sign up to become a JPS customer and get access to the event. Beyond the social services provided at the fair, JPS also promotes energy efficiency literacy with its customers, and encourages the adoption of energy efficient technologies such as LED lightbulbs.

Events similar to these were presented during the Jamaican Knowledge Exchange a year prior on Brazil LIGHT’s experience in engaging low income communities in regularization, energy efficiency, and community engagement efforts.

A newly installed and approved readyboard is providing safe, reliable power in this home in Majesty Gardens.
A newly installed and approved readyboard is providing safe, reliable power in this home in Majesty Gardens.

Majesty Readyboard and Distribution Installation

As assembly of the 420 readyboards was completed at UTech, JSIF began installation of the boards into the Majesty Gardens community where customers had signed up for the new legal electricity service with JPS. Over the course of the installation, the USAID SRUC team worked closely with both groups to provide additional materials to ensure the readyboards would reach approval in a timely manner from the Government Electrical Inspectorate (GEI).

In addition to supporting the installation of the readyboards, JPS began the construction of a nearly $430,000 investment in the supporting electricity distribution infrastructure that would facilitate the connection of the new Majesty Gardens customers. Through this continued partnership JPS, JSIF, and USAID were able to increase legal customers from 14 in June 2015, to 466 as at July 2017. By JPS estimates this marked the first time more than 50% of consumers in the community were connected to legal electricity.

Readyboard Ribbon Cutting Ceremony

A resident of Majesty Gardens holds up a readyboard, encouraging the community to continue to adopt the new technology.
A resident of Majesty Gardens holds up a readyboard, encouraging the community to continue to adopt the new technology.

On Tuesday, July 18, 2017, USAID representatives joined members from JPS, JSIF, UTech, and the Ministry of Science, Energy and Technology to celebrate the 207th readyboard installed in the Majesty Garden community. The event also celebrated a 2.5 year effort from the USAID SRUC team to facilitate the adoption of readyboards in Majesty Gardens as well as its adoption elsewhere in Jamaica.

During the ceremony, the community gathered and praised many of the benefits of the readyboard for the community: reduced danger from fires, improved functionality from appliances, and consistent access to electricity. While the project will continue to install up to 400 readyboards in the community, the USAID SRUC team will continue its support in engagement efforts with the Majesty Community through electrical safety guidance and energy efficiency initiatives.

Last updated: August 25, 2017

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