Groundswell is partnering with The Empowerment Temple to evaluate a potential solar project that would bring clean energy and costs savings to the Park Heights area in Baltimore City. The Empowerment Temple Church is a 10,000 member AME Church in Baltimore, Maryland.
The church is led by Pastor George J. Barnes. Pastor Barnes has served as president and CEO for multiple national multi-million-dollar organizations. He has been featured on Fox, CBS, ABC, and MPT for his leadership skills and business acumen. Pastor Barnes also saw a need for a cutting-edge faith-based learning organization in Baltimore, which led to him founding the Empowerment My Life Institute. He is a published expert in closing the academic achievement gap between black and white communities.
The Empowerment Temple has partnered with the City of Baltimore to be a Resilience Hub — a facility that delivers enhanced support to residents and coordinates resources to assist neighborhood residents during severe weather or other disruptive events. This includes housing supplies, energy storage, and communications services year-round to empower and revitalize communities. Groundswell is also working with Baltimore’s Office of Sustainability and other partners to pair energy storage with the church’s solar installation. This effort will improve the resilience of the church and the surrounding community.
Groundswell’s local partner in this project is The Economic Empowerment Coalition (TEEC), a nonprofit Community Development Corporation (CDC) led by Anthony Robinson, working with Brother Mike Simmons, which is connected to the church. TEEC implements community economic development projects with a focus in the Park Heights area of Baltimore. Through TEEC’s leadership, more than 20 Empowerment “Green Champions” have been trained, and Brother Mike has been recognized as a LEED Accredited Professional.