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Renewable Vibes > News > Blog > A Glen Ellyn couple is providing financial support for solar projects as part of their efforts to fight against climate change.

A Glen Ellyn couple is providing financial support for solar projects as part of their efforts to fight against climate change.

Glen Ellyn resident Jeff Jens was first introduced to the potential of solar power during a visit to his father-in-law’s home in Colorado. The house had a crude solar panel system that heated up water in the basement and distributed the excess heat throughout the house. Jens was amazed by the warmth and realized that solar power was a viable solution to combat climate change.

Years later, when the U.S. withdrew from the Paris Agreement in 2017, Jens and his wife Ann Boisclair felt a stronger urge to take action against global warming. They decided to support solar projects as a way to make a difference.

The couple reached out to Jens’ alma mater, Denison University, to offer seed money for a solar development. Although the university initially declined, they later proposed installing solar panels on a student housing building.

By providing startup funds to organizations that were interested in solar power but lacked the financial means, the couple was able to support 18 projects across the country, with the majority located in Illinois. These projects include installations in churches, government organizations, and educational institutions.

Boisclair and Jens have also donated to a green energy assistance fund through the environmental nonprofit Faith in Place. This fund supports the installation of solar panels and geothermal heating and cooling systems in communities of faith across Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin.

The couple believes that supporting solar projects is a concrete way to combat climate change. They also appreciate the visibility of solar installations, as they serve as a form of advertisement for renewable energy. Boisclair, who has been concerned about climate change since college, emphasizes the importance of funding such projects.

When they are not funding solar projects, Boisclair and Jens engage in other sustainable practices, such as driving an electric vehicle, maintaining a pollinator garden, practicing vegetarianism, and using reusable bags at the grocery store.

While the couple’s resources are limited, they are grateful for the opportunity to contribute to the fight against climate change. Their efforts demonstrate that anyone can make a difference, even with small actions.

Jenny Whidden is a climate change and environment writer working with the Daily Herald through a partnership with Report For America supported by The Nature Conservancy. To help support her work with a tax-deductible donation, see

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