The year 2020 will be unforgettable. The COVID-19 pandemic forced the postponement of volunteer electrification projects, and communities in Bolivia and Guatemala had to put their hopes for power and light on hold.
In January, Missouri volunteers completed the second part of their project in Guatemala as planned, while the Alabama crew had to return home early from Bolivia — but the community still received power thanks to their donation of materials and equipment so local linemen could complete the electrification project. In February Montana volunteers brought power to another community in Bolivia after overcoming several logistical challenges. And finally, determined volunteers from Ohio worked hard and fast to bring power to a remote village in Guatemala as the pandemic closed global borders in March.
As the world reeled to stay safe from the deadly pandemic, volunteer lineworkers from Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Oklahoma, Oregon, Texas and Wyoming were grounded, unable to complete their mission to bring communities access to electricity. But these teams remain committed and are ready to don their gear and get to work as soon as it is safe to do so.
In summary, last year our dedicated electric co-ops brought first-time electricity access to more than 1340 people who live in remote areas in Bolivia and Guatemala. These electrification projects were sponsored by statewide associations to improve the lives of people. They all traveled to construct line and connect homes with affordable and reliable electricity.
We continue to coordinate with co-ops and statewide associations across the country, and we look forward to restarting our vibrant and popular volunteer program to bring power to communities as soon as it is safe to do so.
Thank you, for continuing to support our mission.
BIG SKY TO BOLIVIA
Montana Electric Cooperative Association
Where: Villa Cotoca, Bolivia
The crew: 14 lineworkers, 10 co-ops
Connected: 190 people
MISSOURI ON A MISSION
Association of Missouri Electric Co-ops
Where: Trapichitos, Guatemala
The crew: 10 lineworkers, 9 co-ops
Connected: 550 people
**This project was completed in two missions. Another Missouri team started the job in December 2019.