Future looks bright for solar powered Community Centre
Michele Meredith (Group Manager – Childcare Services), Damian Foley (YMCA Brisbane CEO), Alison Clark (Acting Community Services Manager), Meaghan Scanlon MP (Minister for the Environment and Great Barrier Reef, Science and Youth Affairs) and Wendy Blackmon (Community Support Worker) point to the roof of the Y's Cannon Hill Community Centre, where 72 solar panels have been installed to harness energy from the sun.
‘Sustainable planet’ is one of YMCA’s four global pillars to create a better world... but what does that look like on a local level for the Y Brisbane and its locations across the ‘Sunshine State’?
For the YMCA Cannon Hill Community Centre, it looks like a bright future thanks to solar power.
With the generous support of the Queensland Government and their Community Sustainability Action Grant, the Community Centre has installed a 29.88KW Solar System with 72 solar panels to harness energy during the 300+ days of sunshine in Brisbane each year.
On Wednesday 11 January 2023, Meaghan Scanlon MP (Minister for the Environment and Great Barrier Reef, Science and Youth Affairs) visited Cannon Hill to meet with staff and learn firsthand how the solar panels are making a positive impact at the Centre.
Since the panels were installed in October 2022, the Centre has already reduced its emissions by 1 tonne in the last quarter.
The Centre is also expected to save more than $8,900 on its 2023 electricity bill.
Wendy Blackmon (YMCA Cannon Hill Community Support Worker) said the savings will go directly back into the Centre’s community programs, which support “some of the most vulnerable members of our community”.
Wendy explained that the Community Centre’s social groups, which play “a big part in reducing social isolation and providing a safe space to build human connections”, are just some of the programs that will benefit from the savings.
Extra funds will also go towards the Centre’s ‘Wellbeing Wednesdays’ crisis support program, which Wendy said “supports over 50 people every week with food parcels, toiletries, clothing and community meals”.
Alison Clark (Acting Community Services Manager), Meaghan Scanlon MP (Minister for the Environment and Great Barrier Reef, Science and Youth Affairs), Damian Foley (YMCA Brisbane CEO) and Wendy Blackmon (Community Support Worker) tour the Y Cannon Hill Community Centre.
Aerial view of the Y Cannon Hill Community Centre's 72 solar panels.
Close up of the Y Cannon Hill Community Centre's solar panels.