Cool Down for Warmth Goes Virtual as COVID-19 Increases Need for Utility Assistance

January 13th, 2021


Dollar Energy Fund’s Cool Down for Warmth, powered by Dynegy, will host its 7th annual event virtually to raise funds and awareness for those in our region who struggle to afford the cost of heat-related utility services.  The event will take place on Thursday, January 28, in partnership with KDKA-TV’s Pittsburgh Today Live (PTL), and will provide an opportunity for the community to make a donation in support of local families by calling 1-800-823-WARM between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. or by visiting

The Cool Down for Warmth typically includes the construction of a large ice house in Market Square that is open to the public, but the organization had to change plans due to COVID-19.  This year, ice structures by Mastro Gourmet Ice will be built and carved in Gateway Center and showcased during PTL’s 9:00 a.m. live broadcast on January 28. The public will not be able to view the structures in person.

“While circumstances prevent us from hosting our event as we normally do, we are committed to continuing our efforts to raise awareness and funds for households in our region that are in need of utility assistance during this difficult time.” said Chad Quinn, Dollar Energy Fund’s CEO.  “With many facing unprecedented financial uncertainty amid COVID-19, our program may be the only support for those who are struggling to afford basic, heat-related utility services.  We encourage anyone interested in learning more about Dollar Energy Fund to tune into PTL and see how they can help spread the warmth to their neighbors.”

All online and phone donations will receive a dollar-for-dollar match from Dollar Energy Fund’s partnering utility companies, which includes Columbia Gas of Pennsylvania, Duquesne Light Company, Peoples Natural Gas and West Penn Power, A FirstEnergy Company.  Funds collected will go directly to support local families who are struggling to restore or maintain basic utility service.

This year’s Cool Down for Warmth event is sponsored by Dynegy, UPMC, Citizens Bank of Pennsylvania, First Commonwealth Bank, EQT and BNY Mellon.

Pittsburgh business and community members, including teams from AEC Group, Columbia Gas of Pennsylvania, First Energy, PA Bar Association’s Utility Law Section, members of Dollar Energy Fund’s Board of Directors and other supporters, are utilizing an online crowdfunding platform to raise funds in support of the cause.  Donations can be made in support of their efforts by visiting

Since the first Cool Down for Warmth in 2015, $1.6 million has been raised to benefit 4,500 households in western Pennsylvania.

About Dollar Energy Fund, Inc.

Dollar Energy fund was founded in 1983 and has grown to become the largest hardship fund in Pennsylvania and one of the largest programs of its kind in the United States. Dollar Energy Fund is a 501 (c) 3 organization in the state of Pennsylvania.  Since 1983, the organization has provided $170 million in utility assistance grants to more than 605,000 limited-income families and individuals. The organization also assists limited-income households in West Virginia, Ohio, Virginia, Tennessee, Maryland, Louisiana, Texas, Arkansas, Kentucky, California, Connecticut, Indiana and Nebraska.  Individuals interested in contributing to Dollar Energy Fund can do so through their utility bills, by sending donations directly to Box 42329, Pittsburgh, PA 15203 or through the organization’s website.  Additional information can be found on Dollar Energy Fund’s website,

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