Seed Award Update, March 2009
Award ceremony and strategic plan
For the past 6 months, Las Mujeres Solares have been working with a dedicated team from the United Nations SEED award committee to create a strategic plan for the use of the SEED development support. This SEED initiative is a partnership of the IUCN -the International Union for Conservation of Nature- and the United Nations’ Commission on the Environment (UNEP) and its Commission on Development (UNDP). It recognizes projects for their excellence in presenting a model of sustainable development capable of repetition and inspiring others around the globe, SEED supports exceptional, entrepreneurial, nascent, multistakeholder partnerships for locally-led sustainable development.
To celebrate and publicize the SEED award, SEED’s executive director, Dr. Helen Marduardt, came to Nicaragua this past October to announce and present the award and to visit Las Mujeres Solares and the Solar Center of Sabana Grande de Totogalpa. After visiting Sabana Grande, Dr. Marduardt hosted an award ceremony at the UNI in Managua, celebrating the tremendous efforts of Las Mujeres Solares and the Grupo Fenix team. The Solar Women traveled to Managua to receive not only the SEED award, but also an award from Eurocentro, a program of the Instituto Nicaraguense de Desarollo, for overall excellence in developing renewable energy resources. This was the third year in a row that the Solar Center and the Solar Women have been honored by Eurocentro. Among the speakers at the award ceremony was Lic. Sergio Martinez, Vice-Rector of the University. His closing remarks, which frame so perfectly the mission of the Dreams of a Solar Campus SEED initiative, still echo in our hearts: “If we can do this in one community, just imagine the impact we could have if we replicated it in 1000 other communities,” he said.
Since the award ceremony, Las Mujeres Solares have been working with SEED to clarify and refine the ways in which SEED support during the coming year can best advance their dreams for a self-sustaining Solar Center that creates and supports opportunities for restorative and sustainable development in Sabana Grande de Totogalpa, Nicaragua, and beyond. Las Mujeres Solares will be reviewing a plan for the use of SEED resources at the end of January. Stay tuned for further reports and developments on the SEED initiative!