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RSVP for our 34th Annual Luncheon

Posted on: July 17, 2017

Registration is now open for Dollar Energy Fund’s 34th Annual Luncheon on Friday, September 8, 2017. The event will be held inside The Rivers Casino. Doors will open at 11 a.m., and the program will begin at noon.

Join us for this special event as we celebrate the success of Dollar Energy Fund and our partners over the past year. This year’s event will include lunch, words from our CEO, a keynote address, an awards presentation, silent auction and much more.

Please RSVP by Monday, August 28, 2017. You can do so online by visiting our event website. Individual tickets for the event cost $50 (agencies receive two free tickets). VIP Tables are also available, including 10 tickets and sponsorship signage.

Our Annual Luncheon will celebrate the efforts our partners, donors and friends have extended to help Dollar Energy Fund meet its mission. We will continue to take this opportunity to present awards to recognize those who are making a difference in the lives of our neighbors in need. This is an excellent opportunity to recognize leaders who strive to assist the limited-income community and soar above and beyond for Dollar Energy Fund’s mission.

Click here to learn more about our awards and access nomination forms. Please submit your nominations no later than August 7, 2017, to be eligible for consideration. They may be electronically submitted to events@dollarenergy.org or faxed to 412-431-2085.

Stay tuned for more updates about the Annual Luncheon.

34th Annual Luncheon

Chad Quinn presents a 2016 Golden Eagle Award to Jennifer Schlosser.

Looking Back: #SafetyNetPGH raises $5,800 for Dollar Energy Fund

Posted on: July 11, 2017

Dollar Energy Fund participated in The Pittsburgh Foundation’s #SafetyNetPGH on May 23, 2017. #SafetyNetPGH was a one-day, online Critical Needs Alert fundraiser to seek public support for nonprofit agencies providing essential human services in Allegheny and Westmoreland counties. The areas of focus included support for housing, transportation, physical and mental health, food and nutrition, and child care.

This year, #SafetyNetPGH replaced the foundation’s Day of Giving event that has generated millions of dollars for nonprofits in all areas in the past. This event specifically focused on assisting people in the region who live in or are at-risk of falling into poverty.

Donations made during this one-day fundraiser were eligible for a prorated portion of a $650,000 match pool, which was provided by The Foundation. Dollar Energy Fund received $1,467.50 in donations. The total amount raised by all organizations was $615,839, which means we are eligible to receive a dollar-for-dollar match on all donations. In addition, our total was matched by our utility partners. The total amount we have to put towards our Hardship Program is approximately $5,800.

As usual, 100% of all donations and matching funds to Dollar Energy Fund will be used to support your neighbors in need. Through our unique arrangement with our utility partners, we are able to direct all charitable contributions towards providing assistance grants through our Hardship Program. No organizational operating expenses are paid through donated funds.

Thank you for your support during #SafetyNetPGH! Your generosity is the reason we’ve helped over 9,200 PA families since October 1st. With your help, this number will continue to grow as we assist more families on their path to self-sufficiency.

Dollar Energy Fund attends the 2017 NEUAC Conference

Posted on: July 10, 2017

Several members of Dollar Energy Fund’s staff and management team attended the National Energy and Utility Affordability Coalition (NEUAC) 2017 Annual Conference in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida on June 26-28, 2017. NEUAC is a national coalition dedicated to raising awareness on the energy needs of low and limited-income energy consumers and fostering partnerships to help address these needs. For 29 years, the conference has been the nation’s leading annual meeting of energy assistance leaders.

Chad Quinn, Dollar Energy Fund’s Chief Executive Officer, is currently serving as the Chair of the Governance Board for NEUAC.

More than 600 leaders and experts within the energy assistance community, including utility companies, fuel funds, community-based organizations, government and tribal communities, attended the conference to learn more about emerging trends and best practices related to the low and limited-income families that we serve every day. These eager individuals took advantage of training and educational opportunities as well as shared experiences, common challenges, and most importantly, solutions and successes.

Dollar Energy Fund’s Director of Communications, Jody Robertson, presented at the conference. Jody discussed how Dollar Energy Fund implements its annual Cool Down for Warmth fundraiser. Her workshop gave a comprehensive look at how this successful event comes together, including an analysis of the results. She also provided attendees with information on how they can create an ice house fundraiser in their own communities.

Additionally, Chad Quinn delivered welcoming remarks and introductions for general sessions. He also presented in a post-conference session about water issues. This particular session discussed how the costs of infrastructure improvements and clean water systems are being passed on to residents, creating a significant burden for low-income customers. Chad also discussed steps to establishing a fund for water utility assistance.

Click here for more information about the conference. “Like” NEUAC on Facebook to get updates about the organization and view more photos from the event.

NEUAC NEUACNEUAC

(Photos by Scott Metzler)

Neighbor to Neighbor Program is Accepting Applications for Summer Cooling Assistance

Posted on: June 29, 2017

Neighbor to Neighbor ProgramStarting July 1, the Ohio Neighbor to Neighbor Program will be accepting applications for utility assistance grants for the 2017 summer cooling season. Through a partnership between AEP Ohio, a unit of American Electric Power (NYSE: AEP), and Dollar Energy Fund, eligible AEP Ohio customers who need help during the summer months can apply for assistance to maintain or restore their electric service.

Dollar Energy Fund’s Hardship Program – one of the largest in the country – may provide assistance once per program year to families facing an immediate utility crisis. With help from the Neighbor to Neighbor Program, families in need can receive a grant that is applied directly to their AEP Ohio account that has been terminated or to prevent the termination of their electric service. The program will accept applications from households seeking cooling assistance on a first-come, first-served basis through August 31, 2017, while funds are available.

AEP Ohio and Dollar Energy Fund launched the Ohio Neighbor to Neighbor Program in May 2009 and have helped more than 48,000 Ohio families with more than $12 million in utility assistance grants.

“The summer heat can be particularly challenging for many people, especially the elderly and those with health problems, said Katie Grayem, director of Customer Experience and Communications for AEP Ohio. “For many Ohio families, keeping the house cool during the hot summer months also can be an extremely challenging financial burden. Being a good community partner and neighbor is who we are and what we do, and we are committed to giving our neighbors who may struggle to make ends meet a helping hand to ensure their electric service continues.”

To apply, customers may contact one of the Neighbor to Neighbor Program network of more than 120 Ohio community-based organizations. To qualify, an applicant’s total gross household income must be at or below 200 percent of the Federal Poverty Income Guidelines.

For example, a family of four earning up to $49,200 per year is income-eligible for the program. Households must have made a sincere effort of payment on their electric bill in the last 90 days and have a minimum balance of $50 on their AEP Ohio bill. Full eligibility guidelines and application instructions can be found at AEPOhio.com/helpaneighbor.

“Neighbor to Neighbor has become a program that typically serves the families who find themselves in a temporary financial situation due to an unexpected expense or loss of income,” said Chad Quinn, chief executive officer of Dollar Energy Fund. “The Neighbor to Neighbor Program is available to lend a helping hand to Ohioans who may be struggling to keep food on the table or cover all other household costs.”

The Neighbor to Neighbor Program in Ohio is funded by public contributions that are matched dollar-for-dollar by AEP Ohio. Utility customers may make a contribution through their monthly AEP Ohio bill. Donations also can be made online at AEPOhio.com/helpaneighbor or by sending a check directly to the Ohio Neighbor to Neighbor Program, Box 42329, Pittsburgh, PA 15203. Every donation to the Neighbor to Neighbor Program is used to assist eligible families residing in Ohio.

For more information about Dollar Energy Fund and how to apply for the Hardship Program or donate to the organization, visit www.dollarenergyfund.org.

Golf Classic Recap

Posted on: June 28, 2017

golf classic

Dollar Energy Fund hosted its annual Golf Classic on Friday, June 23, 2017. We welcomed more than 30 foursomes and over 120 guests at Quicksilver Golf Club for a great day on the course.

The day started off with our renowned Bloody Mary bar and breakfast from our friends at Dunkin’ Donuts. Our golfers set out on the course at 8 a.m. with a shotgun start. With friendly contests along the way, such as our new money ball competition, golfers remained engaged and entertained. Our staff worked diligently to provide golfers with cold drinks as they tackled the course, compliments of our friends at Dr. Pepper Snapple Group, Labatt and Wilson McGinley. Smith’s hot dogs were also served at the turn.

Unfortunately, weather prevented golfers from completing the 18-hole course. However, Rita’s Italian Ice surprised guests back at the clubhouse with spiked drinks. Guests also enjoyed lunch, sponsored by Las Velas, and networked with friends as they checked out dozens of silent auction items. Burgers, grilled chicken, meatballs, and potato salad were just a few of the delicious lunch options to choose from. Shortly after, our CEO, Chad Quinn, presented awards.

Columbia Gas of Pennsylvania held their position as Utility Cup reigning champions for the third year in a row! Columbia’s team included Ken Brewer, Phil Spencer, Jerry Litzenberg and Mike Larkin. As a prize, Columbia’s hardship fund will receive an additional $1,000 contribution from Dollar Energy Fund’s general fundraising. In addition, the winners had their name engraved on the cup and will be able to keep the trophy until they defend the title once again during next year’s outing.

We want to thank everyone who helped with the 2017 Dollar Energy Fund Golf Classic. From those who golfed, to those who donated a silent auction item – we couldn’t have done it without you. As always, 100 percent of the proceeds from this event will be matched by our partnering utility companies and will go directly to help families in need.

Dollar Energy Fund would also like to thank all of our Golf Classic sponsors. Their involvement is an integral part of making our event a success, and it goes a long way towards helping the families we serve. Our efforts would not be possible without their support and generosity. We are also grateful to everyone at Quicksilver Golf Club for their excellent service and accommodations.

At Dollar Energy Fund, we always encourage you to have fun while raising money for families and individuals who are on the path to self-sufficiency. Stay tuned for future events by following us on Facebook and Twitter.

To view more photos from our Golf Classic, visit our Facebook page.

 

golf classic

Columbia Gas, Utility Cup Champions

 

golf classic

Columbia Gas drinks a beer from the trophy, a lasting tradition of the Golf Classic.

 

golf classic

Rain didn’t stop this foursome from finishing their last putt.

 

golf classic

Guests enjoy lunch inside the clubhouse, sponsored by Las Velas.

 

 

EggFest raises $2,100 for Dollar Energy Fund

Posted on: June 27, 2017

Dollar Energy Fund attended the Pittsburgh EggFest, hosted by Hearth & Home Furnishings, on Saturday, June 24, 2017. We were so grateful to be the recipient of the EggFest’s raffle proceeds through our continued partnership with Hearth & Home. They generously donated a large Big Green Egg for Dollar Energy Fund to raffle at the event.

The ninth annual Pittsburgh EggFest welcomed friends and families out to the Hearth & Home store in Zelienople for live cooking demonstrations, tasting passes, good music, and many prizes. Attendees were eager to enter the raffle and assist their local neighbors in need.

On behalf of the many families we will be able to help, we gratefully accepted the raffle proceeds donation of $1,075 from Hearth & Home. We would like to thank Nancy, Megan and Laura at Hearth & Home for donating the egg and allowing us to participate in the event. They share our passion for helping their neighbors in need of utility assistance year-round.

We would also be remiss without thanking Peoples, which generously agreed to match the proceeds from the EggFest raffle. With a match from Peoples, Dollar Energy Fund received $2,150 from the event, which will help approximately seven Butler County families restore or maintain safe utility service.

Thank you to all who attended the EggFest and participated in the raffle. Congratulations to the raffle winner, John Staub! Keep your eyes open for next year’s EggFest and for the Warm Your Hearth, Touch a Heart campaign.

To view more photos of the event, please visit our Facebook page.

EggFest

Hearth & Home presents the Big Green Egg to raffle winner, John Staub.

9th Annual EggFest to benefit Dollar Energy Fund

Posted on: June 12, 2017

Dollar Energy Fund will attend the 9th Annual Pittsburgh EggFest, hosted by Hearth & Home Furnishings, on Saturday, June 24, 2017. We proudly support Hearth & Home and partner with them for their Warm Your Hearth, Touch a Heart campaign, which assists us in keeping local families warm during the winter months. This year’s EggFest will take place from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. at their Zelienople location (300 N. Main Street, Zelienople, PA 16063).

Each year they set up 20 – 25 Big Green Egg grills for live cooking demonstrations and informal tastings. Big Green Egg enthusiasts and cooks from all backgrounds will show off their skills by preparing a variety of food throughout the day. “Tasters” have the opportunity to walk around and enjoy the great selection of fresh-off-the-grill food.

EggFests are held throughout the country for fellow Egg-Heads to flaunt their cooking skills. The Big Green Eggs that are used to cook on the day of the event are available for pre-sale at a discounted price. These are first come, first served and only a limited number are available.

Once again this year, Dollar Energy Fund will be the beneficiary of the EggFest’s Big Green Egg Raffle. Hearth & Home, which stocks and sells the Big Green Eggs out of its showroom, will hold a raffle for a large Big Green Egg grill, nest and side table ($1,159 value). Staff members from Dollar Energy Fund will be on site to sell raffle tickets. All proceeds will support Dollar Energy Fund in assisting our local neighbors in need of financial assistance on their utility bills. Peoples generously agreed to match the proceeds dollar-for-dollar to help as many families as possible.

Last year, with the help of Hearth & Home and Peoples, Dollar Energy Fund received more than $2,400 from the event to be put towards our campaign total.

If you’d like to attend the Pittsburgh EggFest, you can purchase tickets here. Last year’s event was sold out, so buy your tickets in advance! Click here for more information about the event.

 

eggfest

Last year, Dollar Energy Fund’s Ashley Allen and Gabriella Giangiuli presented the Big Green Egg to raffle winner, Ben Moore.

Save Money at Home while on Vacation

Posted on: May 18, 2017

vacation

Summer is only one month away and many of us are already planning a weekend getaway or family vacation. Vacation is all about escaping your daily routines and spending quality time with family or friends. However, just because your house is empty doesn’t mean the appliances have stopped increasing your electric bill.

Before you get out of town, don’t forget to prepare your home for energy-savings while you’re away. Use these tips to ensure your vacation won’t be ruined by a high utility bill.

6 Energy-Saving Tips for Your Home while on Vacation

  • Water heating can account for 14%-25% of your home energy. Turn down your water heater to the lowest possible setting, or “vacation” mode.

 

  • Unless pets are left at home, there is no reason to keep your air conditioner running. During hot summer months, the thermostat can either be set at 85 or turned off completely. If you have a programmable thermostat, set the temperature to change on the day of arrival so you can come home to a comfortable home. If you are leaving a pet at home for a few days, be sure to keep the temperature at a safe setting and have a neighbor check on the animal frequently.

 

  • “Energy vampires” are items that still use a significant amount of electricity even when they are turned off. Before you leave, walk around your home and unplug every unnecessary appliance and electronic. Pay close attention to televisions, lamps, entertainment centers, coffee pots, digital clocks, cell phone chargers, electric razors, and anything else that isn’t in use while you’re away. This also eliminates possible fire hazards.

 

  • Lower blinds and close curtains when you’re leaving for vacation. This useful tip will prevent excess heat from entering your home.

 

  • Your refrigerator is one of the biggest energy hogs in your home. Conserve energy by adjusting the thermostat to a higher temperature on your refrigerator and freezer. For extended trips lasting weeks or months, empty your fridge and unplug.

 

  • Most importantly, make sure all lights are turned off. While leaving a light on is a good safety idea, it is a complete waste of energy. Invest in an automatic timer ($10-$20) so specific lights will turn on and off at designated times. This can discourage burglars by giving the illusion that someone is home. You can also ask a neighbor to visit your home and turn a light on at night and off during the day. It’s a simple task if they are already feeding pets or watering plants.

 

Source: energy.gov

New program aims to help Clairton Municipal Authority customers

Posted on: May 15, 2017

Clairton Municipal Authority

The Clairton Municipal Authority, Mayor Rich Lattanzi, Clairton City Council, and Senator Jim Brewster have partnered with Dollar Energy Fund to offer an assistance program to Clairton Municipal Authority customers.

The Clairton Municipal Authority Hardship Program, administered by Dollar Energy Fund, assists eligible customers who are in threat of termination or who have had their water service disconnected as a result of non-payment of their sewage bills.

The program opens on May 15, 2017 and grants are dispersed on a first come, first serve basis while funding is available. To qualify, customers must meet household income limits, having a gross income that is at or below 150% of the 2017 Federal Poverty Income Guidelines (currently, income of $3,075 per month or $36,900 per year for a family of four.) Applicant must also have an outstanding balance on their utility bill of at least $100, and have also made a sincere effort of payment on their account in the past three months.

The maximum grant amount an eligible applicant may receive is $200, once every 12 months. Grant awards are based on need and each family’s circumstances are different. Grant amounts are determined on a case to case basis.

This program is a fund of last resort because it goes above and beyond what is available through federal, state and other programs. Funds are reserved for applicants who are experiencing a documented hardship, such as medical bills, funeral expenses, or a recent job loss.

If you meet the eligibility criteria, the best way to begin the process of receiving assistance is to contact one of our participating community based agencies to make an appointment to complete an application.

For more information on the program, including full program eligibility and application guidelines, please visit www.dollarenergy.org/need-help/pennsylvania/clairton-municipal-authority-hardship-program.

Support Dollar Energy Fund during #SafetyNetPGH

Posted on: April 28, 2017

#SafetyNetPGHDollar Energy Fund will be participating in The Pittsburgh Foundation’s #SafetyNetPGH on May 23, 2017. #SafetyNetPGH is a one-day, online Critical Needs Alert fundraiser to seek public support for nonprofit agencies providing essential human services, such as housing, transportation, health, food and child care. Please visit our profile page on www.pittsburghgives.org to make your contribution and assist a family in need of utility assistance.

This year, #SafetyNetPGH will replace the foundation’s Day of Giving event that has generated millions of dollars for nonprofits in all areas in the past. This event is focusing on assisting people in the region who live in or are at-risk of falling into poverty.

Maxwell King, president and chief executive of The Pittsburgh Foundation, told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “The demand for essential human services in the region is significant enough right now, but with the policies being proposed as a result of the political sea change in the state and federal governments, future funding is at risk and demand is certain to increase.”

Giving begins at 8 a.m. and ends at 11:59 p.m. with a $25 minimum donation. Donations will receive a prorated portion of the $600,000 in matching funds provided by the Foundation. Then, the total amount will be matched dollar-for-dollar by our utility partners, making your donation go further to help even more families.

As usual, 100% of all donations and matching funds to Dollar Energy Fund will be used to support your neighbors in need. Through our unique arrangement with our utility partners, we are able to direct all charitable contributions towards providing assistance grants through our Hardship Program. No organizational operating expenses are paid through donated funds.

We hope that we can count on your support during #SafetyNetPGH.

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Award Nominations

Award nominations are now being accepted for our 34th Annual Luncheon in September 2017. Click on the forms below to find out more information and nominate someone today!

Betty Ann Simon Memorial Award Nomination Form

Golden Eagle Award Nomination Form

Read about our 2016 winners here.

Average Grant Amount = $248.66