FAQ 2018-05-17T13:47:52+00:00

General Questions

We’re glad you asked! We operate two highly impactful programs fighting climate change and working to provide economic opportunity to those who are most in need in our communities.

The California Youth Energy Services (CYES) program employs and empowers local youth to provide no-cost Green House Calls to local residents in 20 communities throughout the region. At each Green House Call, a team of two youth provides residents with an energy and water assessment, energy and water saving installations (lightbulbs, showerheads, etc.), and further conservation tips, all at no cost! The resident gets a valuable service, the environment benefits, and the youth get paid employment, training, mentorship, and a wonderful summer experience.

Our Green Energy Training Services (GETS) program serves low-income adults who are un- or under-employed, providing them with hands-on training for careers in the construction, energy efficiency, and solar industries. The program spans 12 months, beginning with the 9-week Core training class, and including case management and job placement and retention support. GETS is a certified pre-apprenticeship program, providing interested participants with a path to union apprenticeship in the skilled trades. All participants receive eco-literacy training and all construction components are taught with an emphasis on energy efficiency.

In addition to these important programs, Rising Sun engages in broad-based partnerships to advocate for green workforce development and environmental justice throughout the region and the state.

Yes, Rising Sun Energy Center is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit. Our Federal Tax ID # is 77-0359133
Rising Sun is funded through diverse sources. Our largest source of funding is utility contracts administered through the Pacific Gas & Electric Company’s Energy Watch Partnerships. These contracts make most of our work in the CYES program possible. That program also receives significant support from local municipalities and water districts, as well as some foundation and government grants. The GETS program is primarily funded through both public and private grants. Other funding for Rising Sun is received through the generous support of individuals and corporations.
Our 2016 990s and audits are both available here:
990 Form
Rising Sun relies on public support for many aspects of our work. Financial support is always welcomed and encouraged! We accept both cash and non-cash contributions. You can learn more and make a donation here.

We also rely on volunteers to support our programs. If you’re interested in volunteering on a one-time or ongoing basis, please contact our Development Manager here.

Youth Participants

You do if you:

  • are a hard-worker looking to learn and work in an exciting and meaningful summer job
  • are between the ages of 15 and 22
  • live in one of the communities we serve
It’s easy! Just submit your application online here!
As an Energy Specialist, you’ll report to work at your site office each morning where you will pair up with your partner, collect the equipment you’ll need for your appointments, and head out into the field to provide the Green House Call service to local residents who have pre-arranged the appointment.

At each appointment, you will provide the resident with:

  • A basic energy and water assessment
  • Installation of energy and water saving devices such as lightbulbs and showerheads
  • Energy and water saving tips and education

This is all provided to the residents at no cost! Don’t worry, you’ll be thoroughly trained before you go out into the field so by the time you’re in someone’s home, you’ll be a water and energy efficiency expert!

We will be hiring in the following communities:

  • Marin County
  • San Joaquin County
  • Solano County
  • Sonoma County
  • Antioch (and surrounding communities)
  • Concord
  • Emeryville
  • Fremont
  • Hayward
  • Martinez
  • Newark
  • Oakland
  • Richmond
  • San Leandro
  • San Pablo
  • Union City

The 2018 work schedule is:

Wages vary based on whether or not you’re a driver, but you will earn at least $2,200.
 If hired as an Energy Specialist, you will receive paid employment for seven weeks.

  • June 22nd through August 10th: 10:30am to 6:00pm, Tuesday through Friday.
Exceptions to these dates and times are:
  • Training Week, June 22nd – June 29th:  9:30 am to 5:00 pm Monday through Friday.
  • Two adjusted late days: July 11th and July 25th, 12:00pm-7:30pm
LIFT stands for Leader in Field Training and is a position available to former Energy Specialists who are looking to increase their leadership skills and gain additional work experience within the CYES program. There is one LIFT for each CYES site. The LIFT supports the Summer Program Managers and serves as a mentor for Energy Specialists while ensuring the smooth operation of the site and helping provide professional development each week.

If you are a former Energy Specialist interested in becoming a LIFT, please submit your application here.


Adult Participants

GETS training is FREE to those who meet the following eligibility requirements:

  • At least 18 years of age
  • Low-income
  • High school diploma, GED, or equivalent
  • Valid CA driver’s license
  • Demonstrate an 8th grade reading, reading comprehension, writing, and math level
  • Legally eligible to work in the United States
  • Fluent in English
  • Have a stable living situation
  • Able to attend training every day, Monday-Friday from 9:00am-4:00pm
  • Have reliable transportation to and from training
  • Express strong motivation to find a job and/or enter an apprenticeship upon completion of training
The GETS training is FREE!
  1. Attend an info session
  2. Fill out an application
  3. Take the Test of Adult Basic Education
  4. Submit documentation to verify eligibility
  5. Participate in a one-on-one interview
If you are interested in applying to participate in the GETS program, fill out this simple application or contact Tamara Rockett, GETS Case Manager 510-665-1501 x202 or gets@risingsunenergy.org.

Green House Call Recipients

When you sign up for a Green House Call, we’ll send two trained youth Energy Specialists to your home to check for energy- and water-saving opportunities, install resource conservation hardware, and give you personalized recommendations for even more savings.
When you sign up for a Green House Call, you may receive:
A walk-through of your home to identify energy- and water-saving opportunities
Direct installation of:

  • New LED light-bulbs to replace your old incandescent bulbs
  • New, high-efficiency faucet aerators and shower-heads to replace inefficient fixtures
  • A smart powerstrip
  • Energy-efficient and safe fluorescent floor lamps to replace halogen lamps
  • Hot water heater pipe insulation
  • Inspection of all toilets for flush volume and leaks
  • Flow rate test on bathroom and kitchen water fixtures
  • Collection of irrigation information
  • Recommendations on how to save more energy and water in your home
  • Referrals to rebates and other low/no-cost programs, including bill discounts, weatherization, online energy management tools, and more
  • A customized email report detailing the work done in your home, and more tips on conserving energy and water
  • Other measures as available
It won’t cost you anything. Really.
Any PG&E residential customer who hasn’t received the Green House Call service at their residence in the past five years is eligible (Don’t worry, we can look that up for you.). There are no income restrictions, and it doesn’t matter if you rent or own your home.

Green House Calls are typically offered throughout the summer, but may be available in the fall. We partner with different cities each year to host the CYES program, so call today to confirm we’re in your city.

It really is! California utility ratepayers pay a small Public Purpose Program charge on their bills that goes back to conservation programs, including Rising Sun’s workforce development program, California Youth Energy Services (CYES).

We partner with The Pacific Gas and Electric Company, local municipalities, water districts, and other local organizations to bring CYES Green House Calls to local residents.

Sign up today by calling 510-665-1501 ex 5, or sign up online here. We’ll sign you up for an appointment, or make sure you’re on our wait-list.
We ask for feedback from every customer we serve. 98% of our customers rate their Green House Call as good or excellent. Here’s what a happy customer had to say:

“The CYES program is a great program for both educating the community about energy conservation and giving young adults an opportunity for leadership – win-win!”

Your Green House Call can take thirty minutes to two hours, depending on the size of your home.
Rising Sun Energy Center was founded in 1994, and we’ve been providing the Bay Area with Green House Calls since 2000. Today, we work in 23 cities across six counties, and more than 42,000 homes have benefited from our Green House Calls. Our Energy Specialists are youth who live in your city who we personally train and support throughout their employment.

We educate our employees in environmental sustainability, customer service, and technical skills, while providing them with jobs in the green sector. That means that by getting your Green House Call, you’re also helping your community. Our CYES Youth Energy Specialists work in teams: one young adult, aged 18 to 22, and one youth, aged 15 to 17. We are an accredited green employer with full workers compensation and liability insurance.


For Employers

Rising Sun’s Green Energy Training Services (GETS) program produces graduates who are eager to succeed in the world of work.

GETS Core graduates:

  • are OSHA 10 and First Aid/CPR certified
  • can identify and properly use the tools of the construction trade
  • have basic carpentry skills
  • have experience framing walls, installing windows and doors, hanging and patching drywall
  • have experience conducting a residential energy assessment and installing efficiency measures
  • have applied math competency
  • have a basic understanding of apprenticeships and the Building Trades
  • are professional and job-ready

GETS Solar graduates:

  • have basic construction skills
  • know the tools of the trade and the components of a solar system
  • are comfortable working on a roof
  • Have hands-on experience installing residential solar systems
If you’re interested in learning more about GETS graduates or if you have a position to fill, please contact our Job Development Manager here.
Rising Sun has an active Employer Council that works with us to ensure that our curriculum keeps up with industry needs. We would be happy to discuss our curriculum and your needs with you further. If you would like to get involved, we can also discuss participation on the Employer Council. Please contact the Adult Programs Director here.
We know that it’s in the best interest of our participants, Rising Sun, and you, the employer, that we place only qualified candidates who are ready for employment into your open positions. We will work with you to learn about what you are looking for in an employee and send you only those candidates we feel confident can fill your needs.

We will also continue to work with graduates placed in your employment for up to a year, helping them overcome any obstacles they may face and supporting them as they adjust to your employment. We’ll also check in with you regularly to make sure the employment is going well and address any issues you may have. We won’t ever just place an employee and disappear. We’re focused on long-term success and strong employer relationships!