“I don’t want to be in this position -- I don’t want to apply for aid. That’s not me. I didn’t even want to ask for help with these solar panels,” says Latrese Marshall. Mrs. Marshall was made redundant 3 years ago, after working as a Human Resources Specialist for the same company for 23 years.
“I didn’t see it coming,” says Mrs. Marshall. “I just really wasn’t expecting it and it hit me hard.”
Mrs. Marshall is sitting at home with her much loved dog Lexi as GRID Alternatives volunteers from idtDNA, an international custom biology company with offices in San Diego, put a brand new solar electric system onto her roof. Lexi is impressed with all the visitors, and so is Mrs. Marshall now it’s almost done.
“I made myself all anxious over the installation for nothing,” she laughs. “It’s been very unobtrusive, everyone has been so nice. I thought there would be people running all over my house.”
Mrs. Marshall has known about GRID for a while after a neighbor tipped her off, but hadn’t felt ready to submit an application until recently. “I’ve only just been in the right headspace to start figuring things like this out in the past few months,” she says.
Nevertheless, she is glad she did. “My bills are high, sometimes over $200,” explains Mrs. Marshall. “I had SDG&E come over and switch things out to make everything more energy efficient, and I’m always unplugging everything when I’m not using it. It did knock some money off but it’s still been a burden.”
The savings will come in very handy for Mrs. Marshall and her family as she continues to look for work. “I get interviews but it doesn’t go any further and I’m trying to figure out why. I know I’m really good at what I do. I just don’t have any official schooling and I’m wondering if that is the problem.”
Despite her tribulations, like so many of GRID’s clients, Mrs. Marshall is putting her best foot forward. “I have a career counselor now and I’m looking into going back to school,” she says. At least for now a reduced energy bill will offer some breathing room as Mrs. Marshall looks toward the future.