Clean Power

Published on May 22nd, 2016 | by James Ayre


Prince Was Unnamed Driving Force & Checkbook Behind “Green For All” Program Gifting Solar PV Systems To Oakland Citizens

May 22nd, 2016 by  

Those living in Oakland, California, who have benefited from the “Green For All” program that provides locals with rooftop solar photovoltaic systems may want to thank the recently deceased musician Prince, as he was apparently the secret driving force and checkbook behind the program, according to prominent political activist Van Jones.


In a recent interview with CNN, Van Jones revealed that, while he served as the public face of the Green For All group, Prince was the unnamed force behind the program.

“There are people who have solar (PV) panels right now on their houses in Oakland, California that don’t know Prince paid for them,” Jones noted during the interview.

The San Francisco Gate provides more:

In the days since the death of music legend Prince, stories of his secret, wide-ranging philanthropy efforts are finally being told. Two of Prince’s major charitable endeavors were centered in the Bay Area: bringing solar panels to Oakland and helping young people of color learn how to code.

…But that wasn’t all. Prince also helped found #YesWeCode, an initiative to help young people from “low opportunity backgrounds” learn the necessary skills for jobs in the tech sector.

…In fact, Jones says that concerts in Oakland (and other cities) were a “cover” so he could visit and check in on charitable organizations and local community groups.

“He did not want it be known publicly, and he did not want us to say it. But I’m gonna say it because the world needs to know that it wasn’t just the music,” Jones commented. “The music was just one way he tried to help the world, but he was helping every day of his life.”

That matches with personal anecdotes that I’ve heard about the man — despite being publicly a showman of sorts, he seemed to be much more concerned with getting things done than with taking personal credit for them.

Image via Ann Althouse (some rights reserved)

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About the Author

's background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy. You can follow his work on Google+.

  • Eric Lukac-Kuruc

    I never truly appreciated the artist despite his real talent; It turns out now that I appreciate the man of good he was. Thank you Prince.

    • Hank1946

      ” Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.”Give your gifts in private, and your Father, who sees everything, will reward you.”

      I am not trying to be a bible thumper but as you said “never appreciated the artist” I did not even like the person I saw! So I am sorry I did exactly what I should have not done. It really makes his passing more of a tragedy to those who knew what kind of a person he really was. Although never easy they will have far more to remember than most?

  • Jim Seko

    I love it when super-smart and super-talented people turn out to be super humble.

    • earthzero

      Agreed… Awesome talent and a giving human being.

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