The Ministry of Health and Social Services in collaboration with direct relief has officially commissioned a sesame solar nanogrid in the south east community of Grandfond.
Sesame Solar nanogrids can help island nations like Dominica become more energy resilient to prepare for and recover from hurricanes and floods. Sesame solar recognized the devastation created by Hurricane Maria and in 2018 donated a sesame solar nanogrid disaster recovery office to the Princess Margaret Hospital which will support communication and emergency power needs of the PMH.
During the commissioning of Dominica’s second sesame solar nanogrid, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health and Social Services, Letitia Lestrade-Wyke expressed her thanks to the organization for the important equipment.
“The solar nanogrid with its renewable energy supplies provides an additional secured source of power for health care coverage before and after an event. We have a number of health centres with solar power systems installed and this new addition to the stock is a welcomed piece of equipment. On behalf of the Ministry I extend deepest appreciation to Direct Relief and Sesame Solar for your continued support to the Government of Dominica and the Ministry of Health and Social Services,” PS Lestrade-Wyke stated.
The donation was described as timely and very important by members staff of the La Plaine health team noting that the new equipment will reduce the challenges faced after a disaster.
“After Maria the community of Grand Fond suffered without drinkable water and electricity which impaired effective nursing care. The solar nanogrid will provide an alternative for electricity and drinking water eliminating the fear of a post Maria repeat. At this time, this installation is indeed timely knowing that we are in the peak of the hurricane season. The location of Grandfond and its population is at great risk for disaster. Therefore we express gratitude to the Direct Relief team for its initiative in installing this nanogrid. We acknowledge that it is costly and will ensure that it is adequately utilized and maintained to ensure optimal benefits,” the staff member noted.
Direct Relief is a non-profit US based organisation which has given a commitment to assist Dominica in its long term recovery efforts post Hurricane Maria. The organisation has had a long term relationship with Dominica providing assistance to Dominica since the aftermath of Tropical Storm Erika in 2015 and again post Maria in 2017.
“This nanogrid here if Grand Fond is very important for the community because of its hurricane resiliency. Your community will still be able to offer health services to the people of Grand Fond after an event or disaster of any kind,” Direct Relief representative stated.
“This nanogrid will serve the purpose that everyone has been talking about in terms of the climate resiliency. We hope that it is utilised, and we want you to know that Sesame is always here to help Dominica in any way we can,” a representative of Sesame Solar added.