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Support Dollar Energy Fund on Giving Tuesday

Posted on: November 17, 2022

After Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday, it’s time to kick off the charitable season by making a donation on Giving Tuesday. A donation to Dollar Energy Fund is a great way to maximize your charitable dollars. There are many ways to support your neighbors in need on Giving Tuesday, including supporting a local campaign or making a general donation. Here are some suggestions on how you can help local families maintain or restore basic utility service this holiday season:

Give Big Pittsburgh (PA)

Dollar Energy Fund will be participating in #GiveBigPittsburgh on November 29, 2022. #GiveBigPittsburgh is an online fundraising effort, hosted by Pittsburgh Magazine, and offers nonprofits the chance to raise funds to support their critical missions. Please visit our Give Big Pittsburgh profile page and make your contribution. Every donation will be matched dollar-for-dollar by our partnering Pennsylvania utility companies and 100% of all funds will be used to provide utility assistance grants to local neighbors in need.

 

SHARE Omaha (NE)

Be a part of hearts and hands giving to hundreds of local nonprofits across Nebraska. In partnership with Metropolitan Utilities District and Omaha Public Power District, Dollar Energy Fund is participating in SHARE Omaha for Giving Tuesday. Visit our SHARE Omaha profile page and make a contribution to help Nebraska neighbors in need. 100% of funds raised will be used to provide utility assistance to MUD and OPPD customers in need.

 

Make a General Giving Tuesday Donation Online

Make your contribution to Dollar Energy Fund through our secure, web-based donation portal via credit card.

 

Check the Box

Check the Box on your monthly utility bill. Simply check the box on your utility bill to add a donation of $1 or more. The donation is automatically added and allows you to continue to make a difference throughout the year as you make your payments. As more and more people are opting out of paper bills, we’ve made it easy for you to sign up online via our virtual Check the Box website below.

Winter Warm Up Request-A-Thon Raises $161,580

Posted on: November 14, 2022

The Winter Warm Up Request-A-Thon raised $161,580 to benefit Dollar Energy Fund and our neighbors in need, thanks to the combined effort of 3WS Pittsburgh and our supporters across the region. The amount raised will provide utility assistance to more than 449 Pittsburgh families (approx. 1,347 neighbors) during this winter.

Our sixth Winter Warm Up Request-A-Thon took place on November 9 and 10, 2022. 94.5 3WS and Dollar Energy Fund teamed up to bring the community a fun way to help families in our region stay warm. Over the course of the two-day event, 3WS listeners took over the station with their song requests. In exchange for a donation, listeners could request any song with the on-air talent Jonny Hartwell, Bonny Diver, Tall Cathy, and Mike Frazer. A variety of donation incentives were also available during the event, such as concert and game tickets, a spa package, and a new furnace!

The success of our Winter Warm Up Request-A-Thon event would not have been possible without our generous sponsors, including Citizens Bank, Ganley Toyota, 84 Lumber, North Shore Tavern, First National Bank, Metropolitan Window Company, EZ Home Exteriors, Flynn’s Tire & Auto Service, GBU Life, GetGo, and Michelob Ultra. All donations were generously matched dollar-for-dollar by our utility partners: Peoples, Columbia Gas of Pennsylvania, Duquesne Light Company, and West Penn Power, a FirstEnergy Company. In addition, our Neighborhood Hero donation incentives were provided by Air Pro Heating & CoolingShadrack’s Christmas Wonderland, and Re-Mixxd by Steel City Galleries. Lunch and refreshments were provided to staff and phone bank volunteers by North Shore Tavern and Walnut Grill. All of these businesses share Dollar Energy Fund’s mission for assisting the limited-income community. Many of them return to support this campaign year after year, and we thank them so much for their unwavering support.

Dollar Energy Fund also wants to extend a big THANK YOU to the staff at 3WS and iHeart Pittsburgh for rallying their listeners to support our cause.

If you missed our Winter Warm Up Request-A-Thon, you can always help a neighbor in need by visiting our website. All donations are matched dollar-for-dollar and 100% of funds go directly to assist families in need.

Neighborhood Hero Incentives Revealed

Posted on: November 7, 2022

Incentives Revealed

According to a recent report, Pittsburgh is in the top 10 of U.S. cities with the highest average monthly utility bills. Thousands of families across our region are experiencing a financial crisis. As temperatures continue to drop, our neighbors need assistance staying warm and safe in their homes. iHeartMedia is teaming up with Dollar Energy Fund to help our local neighbors restore or maintain their utility service this winter. Our 6th annual Winter Warm Up Request-A-Thon will take place on November 9 & 10, 2022.

The concept is simple: make a donation to Dollar Energy Fund during the event, request a song, and listen to 94.5 3WS. Every effort will be made to play your song, but higher donation amounts will increase your chance of hearing your song in its entirety and enter you to win incentives.

All donations will be matched dollar-for-dollar by our utility partners, and 100% of all funds will go directly to provide utility assistance grants to our most vulnerable neighbors.

Ways to Donate

  • Call 1-800-823-WARM at any time during the hours of the event (7 a.m. to 6 p.m. on November 9 & 10) and a volunteer will assist you with your donation and submitting a song request.
  • Visit www.dollarenergy.org/requestathon to submit a donation and song request via our secure, online donation portal.

Become a Neighborhood Hero

A donation of $180, or $15/month for a year, will make you a Neighborhood Hero! A $180 donation becomes $360 in assistance once matched by our utility partners. This amount is equal to Dollar Energy Fund’s average winter heating season grant amount and is enough to keep the utility service on for a household in need during the winter. Your support at this level makes you eligible for specific donation incentives.

All Neighborhood Heroes will receive the following incentives: (while supplies last)

  • 3WS winter hat
  • Car pass to Shadrack’s Christmas Wonderland at Cooper’s Lake in Butler, PA
  • Two tickets to see the Harlem Globetrotters at PPG Paints Arena on December 26
  • “A Very Yinzer Christmas” album download card
  • Entry for a chance to win one of the following packages:
    • FURNACE PACKAGE: Bryant 95% High-Efficiency Furnace with installation, courtesy of Air Pro Heating & Cooling ($3,500 value with regular installation)
    • CONCERT PACKAGE: Two tickets to see Blake Shelton at PPG Paints Arena on March 24, two tickets to see Ed Sheeran at Acrisure Stadium on July 8, and two tickets to see Rod Stewart with Cheap Trick at PPG Paints Arena on August 26, plus a $50 gift card for dinner at North Shore Tavern for each concert
    • SPA PACKAGE: Overnight stay and spa treatment for two at Avalon’s Grant Resort in Warren, OH
    • SPORTS PACKAGE: Two tickets to a Pittsburgh Penguins game, two tickets to the Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Cleveland Browns game, plus an autographed Evgeni Malkin jersey and an autographed Najee Harris jersey, courtesy of Remixxd by Steel City Galleries

Limited quantities of the Neighborhood Hero incentive packages are available, so guarantee your incentive by submitting your song request and donation now!

Be sure to follow us on Twitter and Facebook before the Request-A-Thon begins so that you can stay up to date with rapid-fire incentives, guests and promotions throughout the two days. Listen to 94.5 3WS on November 9 & 10 for more details.

2022-2023 Program Opening Day Brings Support To Limited-Income Utility Customers

Posted on: October 3, 2022

Dollar Energy Fund’s 2022-2023 Hardship Program opens today and is now accepting applications from limited-income customers who need assistance with their gas, electric, water and wastewater utility bills. The program provides grants to households facing an immediate utility crisis and funding is applied directly to their utility account to prevent a termination or to restore their service.

Those seeking help should first contact their utility company for an eligibility screening and a referral to one of the Dollar Energy Fund’s Community-Based Organization partners to complete an application for the program. This approach connects households with additional services provided by a local nonprofit agency that may also be available to limited-income households, such as food, childcare and career assistance. A contact-less application option may be available upon request.

Eligibility is largely based on an applicant’s total household income and the amount varies by utility. In addition to meeting income guidelines, households may have needed to make a sincere effort of payment on their utility bill in the last three months and have a balance on their account. Households must first apply for available federal and state assistance if they are income eligible. Specific requirements, account balances and sincere payment amounts vary by utility company and guidelines are subject to change. Some utility companies require a customer’s service to be off or in threat of termination to receive assistance.

Full eligibility guidelines and application instructions can be found at www.dollarenergy.org/need-help.

Applications will be accepted on a first come, first served basis through September 30, 2023, or until funds are depleted.

Last year, the Pittsburgh-based nonprofit helped 36,197 limited-income households across the country meet their basic utility needs through distributing hardship grants. The organization currently operates Pennsylvania’s largest hardship fund and is a national leader in utility assistance. Since 1983, Dollar Energy Fund’s hardship grants have helped more than 794,500 families across its 14-state service territory maintain or restore safe utility services.

Dollar Energy Fund is funded by public contributions that are matched dollar for dollar by partnering utility companies. Utility customers are also able to contribute a dollar or more to Dollar Energy Fund through their monthly utility bill. Direct donations can be made online at www.dollarenergy.org/donate or by sending a check to Box 42329, Pittsburgh, PA 15203. Every donation to Dollar Energy Fund’s Hardship Program is tax deductible and all funds collected from Pennsylvania donors are used to assist limited-income families residing in the Commonwealth.

Additional support from the utility companies allows for 100 percent of all donations and matching funds to be used as assistance grants to help households in need.

For more information about Dollar Energy Fund and how to apply for a grant from the Hardship Program, or to make a donation to the organization, visit www.dollarenergy.org.

 

Year in Review: 2021-2022

Posted on: October 3, 2022

Dollar Energy Fund kicked off a new program year on October 3, 2022. Let us take a moment to remember the accomplishments we shared together this past year. Our success would not be possible without the constant support from all of our partners, agencies, donors, staff, board members, community leaders, businesses and more. By sharing Dollar Energy Fund’s dedication and passion for helping your neighbors in need, you have allowed us to continue our essential work for more than 39 years. Here are some highlights from the 2021-2022 program year (October 2021 – September 2022):

 

October

  • Dollar Energy Fund earned its fifth consecutive 4-star rating from Charity Navigator for our commitment to financial accountability and transparency.
  • Dollar Energy Fund celebrated our 30-year partnership anniversary with Pennsylvania American Water and the H2O Help to Others Program.

November

  • Dollar Energy Fund hosted its annual Winter Warm Up Request-A-Thon in partnership with iHeartMedia and 3WS Pittsburgh. The event raised $150,492 to provide utility assistance to approximately 425 Pittsburgh households who were struggling to stay warm.
  • Dollar Energy Fund was a sponsor and benefiting charity of Shadrack’s Christmas Wonderland in Butler, PA and Johnson City, TN. Coupons were distributed to customers to receive $2 off admission and Dollar Energy Fund received a $1 donation for every coupon redeemed. In total, the Shadrack’s campaign raised $28,000 to help families across Pennsylvania and Tennessee.
  • Dollar Energy Fund participated in #GiveBigPittsburgh and #ShareOmaha on Giving Tuesday.

December

  • Dollar Energy Fund signed contracts with National Fuel Gas Company and Omaha Public Power District for their LIRA and CAP programs.
  • The EQT Foundation connected with Dollar Energy Fund again this year to make a $10,000 donation to benefit Pennsylvanians in need.
  • The Jack Buncher Foundation supported Dollar Energy Fund with a $60,000 donation to help Pennsylvanians in need.
  • The Citizen’s Bank Foundation awarded Dollar Energy Fund with a $53,000 donation towards the Hardship Program and Cool Down for Warmth campaign.

January

  • In January, Dollar Energy Fund raised more than $140,000 during its 8th annual Cool Down for Warmth event on Pittsburgh Today Live (KDKA-TV). The amount raised gave assistance to approximately 390 Pittsburgh families who were struggling to afford safe utility service.

February

  • In February, Dollar Energy Fund’s 14th annual Warmathon on KDKA Radio raised $203,328, which provided utility assistance grants to 564 additional Pittsburgh-area households.

March

  • The Robert Morris University Department of Athletics partnered with Dollar Energy Fund this season to assist families in the Pittsburgh region struggling to afford heat. The “Points for Power” program donated $1 for every point scored by the RMU men’s and women’s basketball teams. The total amount raised was $7,482.
  • This year’s virtual Heat the Streets Run & Walk for Warmth in Nebraska raised $151,352 to provide utility assistance to Omaha Public Power and Metropolitan Utilities District customers in need.

April

  • Dollar Energy Fund celebrated National Pet Day with a slideshow of our employees’ favorite pets.
  • On April 19, 2022, Dollar Energy Fund marked its 39th anniversary of helping our neighbors in need with utility assistance. What began as a small community effort, has grown to become one of the largest hardship funds for limited-income families across the country.
  • Dollar Energy Fund partnered with the Pittsburgh Penguins to host two fundraising campaigns in April – the Fan Appreciation Night Raffle and Jerseys for Warmth Charitable Auction. With your help and a generous match from our utility partners, these campaigns raised a total of $85,552 to benefit 238 local households in need of utility service.

May

  • During the first week of May, Dollar Energy Fund’s management team attended CS Week in Phoenix, to connect with more utility partners outside our service territory and expand our mission of helping customers in need.
  • Dollar Energy Fund participated in SHARE Omaha’s #DoGoodDays to provide critical relief to Nebraska families in need through Omaha Public Power District’s Energy Assistance Program and Metropolitan Utilities District’s Home Fund.

June

  • Dollar Energy Fund joined a panel of fuel fund reps for a session on “Adaptations During the Pandemic” at the National Energy and Utility Assistance Coalition Annual Conference in New Orleans.

August

  • In August, Dollar Energy Fund participated in the Pittsburgh Foundation’s #ONEDAY Critical Needs Alert. With a match from our utility partners, the campaign raised nearly $3,000 for local customers in need.
  • Dynegy donated $20,000 in bill payment assistance to Dollar Energy Fund’s Hardship Program in Beaver and Westmoreland counties. This contribution is the largest Dollar Energy Fund has ever received from a supplier and will have a significant impact for families in our region.

September

  • Dollar Energy Fund continues its partnership with Pitt Athletics by sponsoring the Pat Narduzzi Show on KDKA Radio.
  • In September, we welcomed 30 foursomes at Quicksilver Golf Club for our 14th annual Golf Classic. This event is a fan favorite, featuring 18-holes of golf, our famous Bloody Mary Bar, a delicious lunch and more. The online silent auction raised over $2,700 in donations.
  • Dollar Energy Fund was named a Top Workplace in Pittsburgh by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette for the second year in a row!

 

Most importantly, Dollar Energy Fund distributed 36,197 grants across the country during the 2021-2022 program year. Since 1983, we have assisted more than 794,000 households by distributing $240 million in utility assistance nationwide.

With your help, we can continue to provide immediate and direct assistance during our 2022-2023 program year. Your contribution, no matter how big or small, can make an extraordinary impact by ensuring local, limited-income families maintain or restore safe utility service and get on a path to self-sufficiency. Please consider making a tax-deductible donation before the end of the calendar year. If you would like to get involved during this program year, follow us on social media to stay up to date on our winter fundraising campaigns. On behalf of the many individuals, seniors, and families we help, thank you for your continued support!

Golf Classic Recap

Posted on: September 14, 2022

Dollar Energy Fund hosted its annual Golf Classic on Friday, September 9, 2022, sponsored by First National Bank. We welcomed 30 foursomes at Quicksilver Golf Club for a great day on the course.

The day started off with our renowned Bloody Mary Bar and a light breakfast. Golfers set out on the course at 8 a.m. with a scramble format. With friendly competitions along the way, such as hole-in-one challenges, longest drive contests and more, golfers were entertained throughout all 18 holes. The staff at Quicksilver worked diligently to provide golfers with cold drinks and snacks as they tackled the course. Hot dogs were also served at the turn.

After all teams finished the course, guests returned to the clubhouse for lunch, and networked with friends as they viewed over 20 silent auction items. Shortly after, Dollar Energy Fund’s CEO, Chad Quinn, and Director of Communications, Jody Robertson, presented awards and prizes. The 2022 Golf Classic prizes were sponsored by Pennsylvania American Water.

After a tie breaker, first place all-around team with a score of 57 was a foursome from Thomarios. This is the foursome’s second consecutive first place win at Dollar Energy Fund’s Golf Classic.

Placing second was a foursome from Columbia Gas of Pennsylvania. Columbia Gas held their title once again as Utility Cup Champions. The Utility Cup was established in 2014 as a way to create friendly competition between our utility partners. As a prize, Columbia’s hardship fund will receive an additional $1,000 contribution from Dollar Energy Fund’s general fundraising and bragging rights for the year. In addition, the winners will have their name engraved on the cup and will be able to keep the trophy until they defend the title during next year’s outing.

Third-place honors were earned by a foursome from Pennsylvania American Water. We also want to congratulate our individual contest winners:

  • Phil Spencer – longest drive (men)
  • Tiffany Reed – longest drive (women)
  • Brent Semachko – closest to the pin
  • Jim Crockard – longest putt

We want to thank everyone who helped with the 2022 Dollar Energy Fund Golf Classic. From those who golfed, to those who participated in our silent auction – 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 was 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 our supporters to have fun while raising money for families and individuals who are on their path to self-sufficiency. Stay tuned for future events by following us on Facebook and Twitter, and sign up for our monthly newsletter.

Click here to view more photos from our Golf Classic.

 

 

Dynegy Announces $20,000 Energy Aid Donation to Dollar Energy Fund

Posted on: September 8, 2022

From left, Colin Fitzsimmons, Pennsylvania Senator Elder Vogel, Pennsylvania Representative Josh Kail, Pennsylvania Representative Jim Marshall, Zabriawn Smith, Kim Campbell and Chad Quinn gathered for a check presentation at Housing Opportunities of Beaver County, Inc. on August 31, 2022.

 

With rising costs across the board and summer heat driving up electricity use, additional strain is being put on the most vulnerable Pennsylvanians. Dynegy is partnering with Dollar Energy Fund to provide relief. This year, Dynegy is donating $20,000 in bill payment assistance to Dollar Energy Fund’s Hardship Program in Beaver and Westmoreland counties. The funding is part of $50,000 Dynegy is donating in Pennsylvania to help families with rising electric bills.

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission recently announced that many non-shopping (default service) customers in western Pennsylvania face sharp increases in energy costs, as much as 19%, as utilities adjust their prices for electric generation on Sept. 1. Many of these same customers were affected by rate increases that took effect June 1.

Dollar Energy Fund’s Hardship Program provides utility assistance to limited-income households struggling to afford basic gas, water, wastewater, and electric service. In order to receive assistance, applicants must have a household income within the set program eligibility guidelines, demonstrate a sincere effort to pay, and pursue federally funded energy programs, if applicable.

“Dynegy is leading the way among electric energy generation suppliers by providing this donation for the benefit of limited-income utility customers,” said Chad Quinn, Dollar Energy Fund’s chief executive officer. “This contribution is the largest Dollar Energy Fund has ever received from a supplier and it will have a significant impact for families in our region who need financial assistance to maintain basic utility services.”

 

About Dynegy
For over 30 years, Dynegy has helped millions of Americans throughout the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic and Midwest power their homes and businesses. Dynegy delivers simple, price-protected electricity plans for residential, municipal aggregation, commercial and industrial customers alike. Dynegy is committed to the communities it serves and gives back through local partnerships. Visit dynegy.com for more. Dynegy is a subsidiary of Vistra (NYSE: VST).

 

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 in the United States. Dollar Energy Fund is a 501 (c) 3 organization in the state of Pennsylvania. Since 1983, the organization has provided $237 million in utility assistance grants to more than 785,500 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 online donation portal. Additional information can be found on Dollar Energy Fund’s website, www.dollarenergy.org.

AEP Ohio Neighbor to Neighbor Program is Accepting Applications for Summer Cooling Assistance

Posted on: July 1, 2022

The AEP Ohio Neighbor to Neighbor Program is now accepting applications for utility assistance grants for the 2022 summer cooling season.

Through a partnership between AEP Ohio, an American Electric Power (NYSE: AEP) company, and Dollar Energy Fund, the Neighbor to Neighbor Program supports families in need with a grant applied directly to their AEP Ohio account to prevent disconnection of, or to restore their electric service.

Cooling assistance is available once per program year on a first-come, first-served basis. Eligible account holders may apply through September 30, 2022, while funds are available. This Summer Cooling Assistance is distinct from the Special Storm Assistance Program. For a limited time, customers are eligible for two grants per year.

“With the recent record high-temps we’ve experienced, some families may realize cooling expenses they didn’t anticipate this early in the summer. Coupled with higher gas and food prices, making ends meet will be especially difficult for some,” said Brian Billing, consumer programs manager for AEP Ohio. “We remain to be committed to supporting our customers – especially the elderly and those with health problems – maintain their electric service during the hot summer months.”

Since AEP Ohio and Dollar Energy Fund launched the Neighbor to Neighbor Program in May 2009, more than $16.3 million in assistance has been granted to more than 67,000 Ohio households.

To apply, customers may contact one of the AEP Ohio Neighbor to Neighbor Program’s network of more than 120 Ohio community-based organizations, or apply online using the link available at Neighbor to Neighbor (aepohio.com). To qualify, an applicant’s total gross household income must be at or below 300 percent of the Federal Poverty Income Guidelines.

For example, a family of four earning up to $83,250 per year is income-eligible for the program. Households must have an outstanding balance on their bill of at least $50 and behind on bill payment 30 days or more. Full eligibility guidelines and application instructions can be found at AEPOhio.com/helpaneighbor.

“Dollar Energy Fund is proud to maintain its support for AEP Ohio and its efforts to serve families who find themselves in a temporary financial crisis,” said Chad Quinn, chief executive officer of Dollar Energy Fund. “The AEP Ohio Neighbor to Neighbor Program has become a very useful resource for thousands of households across Ohio, enabling them to maintain utility service when blindsided by unexpected circumstances.”

The AEP Ohio Neighbor to Neighbor Program 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 www.AEPOhio.com/N2N or by sending a check directly to The AEP 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. Every dollar donated to the Neighbor to Neighbor Program will be matched by AEP Ohio. These matching funds and 100% of your donation will assist limited-income families residing in Ohio to afford utility service. With AEP Ohio’s generous match, your tax-deductible donation will have twice the impact!

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

Dollar Energy Fund and the Pittsburgh Penguins raise $85,552 for families in need

Posted on: May 4, 2022

Dollar Energy Fund partnered with the Pittsburgh Penguins to host two fundraising campaigns in April – the Fan Appreciation Night Raffle and Jerseys for Warmth. With your help and a generous match from our utility partners, these campaigns raised a total of $85,552 to benefit 238 local households in need of utility service.

 

Pittsburgh Penguins Fan Appreciation Night Raffle

Dollar Energy Fund set out to create the ultimate fan experience through our Fan Appreciation Night Raffle! Five finalists were selected from a pool of 1,105 entries for this one-of-a-kind opportunity. Each finalist received two tickets to the Jim Beam© Make History™ Party Suite to watch the Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Columbus Blue Jackets final regular season game on Friday, April 29, 2022.

Before the puck dropped, each of the finalists had the opportunity to reach into their gift bag and pull out a hockey puck. The two finalists who received black pucks, Judith and Anthony, were granted participation in the Shirts Off Our Backs selection process and received autographed, game-worn jerseys from Mike Matheson and Evgeni Malkin. The Pittsburgh Penguins went on to secure a 5-3 win against the Columbus Blue Jackets. Congratulations to our grand prize winners! The remaining finalists received yellow autographed pucks and prize packs.

Thank you to all of the Penguins fans who purchased raffle tickets. Each ticket resulted in a $10 donation to Dollar Energy Fund, with a dollar-for-dollar match from our utility partners. All proceeds will be used to help our neighbors in need restore or maintain basic utility service.

(Left to right) Chris, Judith, Harley, Terry, and Anthony; Pittsburgh Penguins vs Columbus Blue Jackets; Fan Appreciation Night – April 29, 2022

 

Jerseys for Warmth Charitable Auction

Nearly two dozen Pittsburgh Penguins game-worn jerseys from the April 9, 2022, match-up versus the Washington Capitals were auctioned off online. Each jersey was autographed and featured a commemorative patch authentication. 

Thanks to everyone who supported the Jerseys for Warmth Auction! The auction raised more than $74,000 to support Dollar Energy Fund and benefit local families in need of utility assistance. Our utility partners provided a dollar-for-dollar match on all donations and 100% of proceeds will be used to help local families maintain or restore basic utility service.

The History of Dollar Energy Fund: 1983-2022

Posted on: April 18, 2022

Our History

Dollar Energy Fund was founded on April 19, 1983, in Western Pennsylvania by a coalition of concerned community and business leaders.

In 1983, Betty Ann Simon was working as a volunteer for KDKA’s “Call for Action,” a program that helped people find agencies to assist them in solving problems. She found herself inundated with calls from low-income individuals seeking help with their mounting utility bills. Betty Ann was compelled to help, so she reached out to her contacts from various regional religious and social agencies. This led local religious and community leaders to recognize that far too many of their less fortunate neighbors were unable to afford the cost of heat, electricity and water. In response to the growing crisis, a coalition of 24 community leaders formed Dollar Energy Fund.

Dollar Energy Fund was headquartered at Synod Hall in the Saint Paul Cathedral in Oakland. The grassroots effort started contacting utility companies and executives agreed to contribute on a dollar-for-dollar basis. For every dollar raised, the utility company would also give one dollar to help a family in need. During its first year, Dollar Energy Fund’s Hardship Program distributed $397,200 to 1,218 households in Pennsylvania.

Betty Ann worked tirelessly for two decades directly addressing the daily struggles faced by thousands of limited-income households in Pennsylvania. From her position as a founder in 1983, to her active service on the Board until her passing in 2002, she focused on developing ways to immediately provide assistance to families facing difficulties in affording safe and adequate utility service.

Our organization has since grown to become the largest hardship fund in Pennsylvania and one of the largest in the country. For 39 years, we’ve served the limited-income community by providing more than $232 million in utility assistance grants to more than 769,000 limited-income families and individuals.

Our Partnerships

Dollar Energy Fund began with three utility partners – Duquesne Light Company, Columbia Gas of Pennsylvania, and Peoples – and 24 community-based agencies in Western Pennsylvania. We expanded beyond Pennsylvania in 2008 with the addition of a Hardship Program in West Virginia. Since then, we’ve extended our reach into Ohio, Virginia, Tennessee and Maryland in 2009; Texas and Louisiana in 2011; Arkansas in 2013; California and Kentucky in 2014; Connecticut in 2016; Indiana in 2019; and most recently, Nebraska in 2020.

Today, our organization administers Hardship Programs for 45 utility companies across 14 states. Dollar Energy Fund partners with over 450 community-based organizations throughout our service territory. These organizations handle application intake for our programs while also connecting those in need with other forms of assistance. This approach puts at-risk households in touch with additional services—such as food, childcare and career assistance.

Our Unique Funding Model

As Betty Ann Simon intended, our unique funding model provides a dollar-for-dollar match from our partnering utility companies for almost every donation we receive. The utility companies also make a separate donation to cover our administrative fees, so 100 percent of all individual donations are used to provide utility assistance grants to limited-income households.

Looking Forward

Though much has changed since 1983, many aspects of Dollar Energy Fund remain the same. The majority of funding is obtained through private donations and matching utility shareholder credits; each Hardship Program application is reviewed individually; and the focus is still on our clients and the mission of helping neighbors in need.

As Dollar Energy Fund continues to expand, so does the need for utility assistance. Dollar Energy Fund is still working to fulfill its mission of helping families on their path to self-sufficiency. If you would like to help a neighbor in need, please visit www.dollarenergy.org/donate.

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36,197 Grants Provided During Our 2021-2022 Program Year