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Field Ready: Stories Restoring Power in the USVI with Julia Jenjezwa

"I don't have my house anymore, hurricane Irma caused my roof to cave in. It caved in all my rooms except the bedroom so I don't have a place right now. I lost almost everything."

-Risa, St. Thomas Resident, assisted by Field Ready

Julia repairing items

When Julia Jenjezwa first heard that Field Ready was looking for people to add to our roster of people ready to respond to disasters, she jumped at the chance.

“I just want to help people,” she says, “by using my skills.”

Using wifi that Julia helped restore, she shows kids in the USVI where she is from

Originally from Zimbabwe, Julia completed a degree in Mechanical Engineering from Yale University. When not responding to disasters for Field Ready, she is a school teacher in STEM-related subjects.

Julia is a humanitarian at heart and loves to combine her skills with her passion:

"One of the best ways to help others is by designing and making useful things in low resource settings. There are no more resource scarce settings than disasters. And that allows us to accelerator the impact we can have.”

Since the response to the hurricanes started, Julia has made a real impact. Having been a core member of the response team, the rapid assessment quickly led to a project in the USVI. The island had thousands of broken solar panels, and Field Ready decided that one of the most effective ways to help would be to salvage the solar panels and help restore electricity on the island. Julia served as the perfect candidate to help pioneer this program.

Julia and Dara repairing solar panels
Briefing a group of humanitarians in the USVI

"Julia is a great addition to Field Ready. Her experience in mechanical engineering and STEM education has proven to be highly useful when it comes to training others in our approach."

-Dr. Eric James, Executive Director

Julia and the team have made strides repairing solar panels and helping to relieve those that are suffering. Watch this space to see how the project progresses.

Humanitarian Supplies Made-in-the-Field

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