While COVID-19 stopped Colorado’s electric cooperatives from sending a team of lineworkers to Bolivia in 2020, the pandemic has not stopped the electric co-ops in the United States from continuing to virtually support electric development around the world.
NRECA International, the organization CREA worked with when Colorado’s electric cooperatives sent teams of lineworkers to Guatemala to build power lines to electrify small villages, has continued its work in various parts of the world.
Just last month, NRECA International announced it signed a five-year contract to take over the operation of a struggling distribution utility in south-central Nigeria and transform it into a profitable company providing dependable service to its customers. When work begins this spring, NRECA International will assign three full-time employees to the utility, supported by a technical team of 10 NRECA engineering, commercial and management specialists.
The NRECA team will evaluate the training needs of the existing distribution utility team and design a program to build capacity and improve technical, commercial and customer-service skills.
The Nigerian contract is the largest of about a half-dozen African contracts that NRECA International has been awarded during the COVID-19 pandemic. There have been some challenges as all communications have been managed virtually, but the work to improve the quality of life of people around the globe has not slowed down.