Cooke Scotland Funds Solar Panel Project at Shetland Outpost

Cooke Scotland has proudly supported the installation of solar panels at a Shetland facility which caters for people with additional support needs.

The green energy project at The Outpost on the East Isle of Burra has received £5,000 from the Cooke Community Benefit Fund.

Installation of the solar panels will result in the Australian-themed outpost becoming more energy efficient and therefore create opportunities to continue its valuable work in the Shetland community.

The Outpost welcomes visitors to enjoy viewing the wide variety of animals and taking part in arts and crafts as well as baking and music therapy sessions.

Dave Kok, originally from Tasmania, is a care worker and owner of The Outpost where he cares for animals such as wallabies, emus and sugar glider possums. He said:

“The Outpost would like to thank Cooke for their generous donation. Any help we can get to improve things here for the people with additional support needs and improvements for the animals is great. It is not only a benefit for them, but for the wider Shetland community.

“Cooke’s funding support has been an amazing boost towards what we do here at The Outpost. Thank you once again Cooke for helping us to get Nordri Limited to install solar panels. This not only helps with The Outpost’s energy bill for all our electricity running costs, but also our carbon footprint as well.”

Those with additional support needs have engaged in a variety of projects in the past such as building and painting animal shelters, a library and an aviary which has provided learning and skill development opportunities. The facility also caters for school groups and outings from care centres.

The solar panel project was co-funded by Shetland Islands Council Coastal Communities Fund.

On behalf of the Cooke Community Benefit Fund Sponsorship Committee, Murray Spooner, Communications Manager at Cooke Scotland, said:

“The Outpost in Shetland is very community-driven and caters for people from all backgrounds and all ages, especially those with additional support needs.

“We are delighted to support this facility with a donation from the Cooke Community Benefit Fund which will help financially sustain the service The Outpost provides for the Shetland community.

“It is important to us we contribute to the social network and economic health of the coastal and rural communities we operate and live in.”

Shetland is Cooke’s most productive region and in turn aquaculture is Shetland’s largest private sector industry, accounting for 20 per cent of the economy and five per cent of all jobs.

Cooke has seawater sites off the east coast of the islands of Yell and Unst, and off the west coast of mainland Shetland and further operate several freshwater sites in Unst.

Find out more about the Cooke Community Benefit Fund.