Year in Review: 2020-2021
Posted on: September 22, 2021
Dollar Energy Fund kicks off a new program year on October 1, 2021. Let’s 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 38 years. Here are some highlights from the 2020-2021 program year (October 2020 – September 2021):
- Dollar Energy Fund assisted in administering $25 million in CARES Act Relief Funds to assist qualifying West Virginians who, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, were struggling to pay their utility bills.
- Columbia Gas of Pennsylvania and Dollar Energy Fund teamed up for an online fundraiser to help customers in need. Individuals purchased Digger Dog™ kids craft boxes to provide a fun activity for kids while helping neighbors experiencing financial hardship pay their utility bills.
- Dollar Energy Fund hosted its 4th annual Winter Warm Up Request-A-Thon in partnership with iHeartMedia and 3WS Pittsburgh. The event raised $135,664 to provide utility assistance to approximately 1,131 Pittsburgh neighbors 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. Shadrack’s made a generous donation of $27,500 to Dollar Energy Fund. Coupons were distributed to customers to receive $2 off admission and Dollar Energy Fund received a $1 donation for every coupon redeemed.
- Dollar Energy Fund participated in #GiveBigPittsburgh and #ShareOmaha on Giving Tuesday.
- In partnership with Columbia Gas of Pennsylvania, 96.9 BOB FM, Q92.9 FM, and the Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Dollar Energy Fund hosted a Happy Holidays Hotline to raise funds for families in need with heating assistance. Supporters made a donation to Dollar Energy Fund and recorded a holiday message to be played on air.
- Pennsylvania American Water hosted a Facebook live virtual session for customers to learn more about the H2O Help to Others program and other assistance options.
- In January, Dollar Energy Fund raised more than $275,000 during its 7th annual Cool Down for Warmth event on Pittsburgh Today Live (KDKA-TV). The amount raised gave assistance to approximately 765 Pittsburgh families and individuals who were struggling to afford safe utility service.
- Dollar Energy Fund launched the MyApp portal, to offer an easy way for eligible customers to complete portions of their applications online.
- In January, the Douglas County Board of Commissioners voted to allocate $2 million in funding to aid Douglas County residents who continue to financially struggle due to fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic. Dollar Energy Fund assisted with administering these funds to customers of Metropolitan Utilities District and Omaha Public Power District.
- In February, Dollar Energy Fund’s 13th annual Warmathon on NewsRadio 1020 KDKA raised $175,510, which provided utility assistance grants to 487 Pittsburgh-area households.
- First Commonwealth Bank provided more than $200,000 in utility assistance to households across Ohio and Pennsylvania.
- This year’s virtual Heat the Streets Run & Walk for Warmth in Nebraska raised more than $103,000 to provide utility assistance to Omaha Public Power and Metropolitan Utilities District customers in need.
- Peoples hosted a virtual Customer Assistance Panel on Facebook to inform customers about available assistance programs and how to apply.
- On April 19, 2021, Dollar Energy Fund marked its 38th 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 participated in SHARE Omaha’s #DoGoodWeek campaign 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.
- Students at Fairview Elementary School participated in an annual Read-A-Thon to help their neighbors in need. 102 students read for a total of 31,469 minutes over two weeks and raised $9,018. The students donated $7,414 to Dollar Energy Fund to provide assistance to families negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. After a match from Dollar Energy Fund’s utility partners, their efforts resulted in $15,000 in utility assistance.
- Over two dozen Pittsburgh Penguins game-worn jerseys were auctioned off online during the Jerseys for Warmth Charitable Action. The campaign raised more than $64,000 to support Dollar Energy Fund and benefit an estimated 178 local families in need of utility assistance.
- Several members of Dollar Energy Fund’s staff and management team attended the virtual National Energy and Utility Affordability Coalition (NEUAC) 2021 Annual Conference.
- Dollar Energy Fund earned its fourth consecutive 4-star rating from Charity Navigator.
- 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 more than $6,100 for local customers in need.
- LIHEAP celebrated its 40-year anniversary.
- Dollar Energy Fund continued its partnership with Pitt Athletics by sponsoring the Pat Narduzzi Show on KDKA Radio.
- Dollar Energy Fund helped administer new funds allocated to provide utility assistance grants to customers residing in Allegheny County who are struggling to afford their bills as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
- In September, we welcomed 25 foursomes at Quicksilver Golf Club for our 13th 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 $1,500 in donations.
- Dollar Energy Fund was once again named a Top Workplace in Pittsburgh for 2021 by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
Most importantly, Dollar Energy Fund distributed 129,962 grants, totaling more than $50 million across the country during the 2020-2021 program year. Since 1983, we have assisted more then 758,500 households by distributing $229 million in utility assistance nationwide.
With your help, we can continue to provide immediate and direct assistance during our 2021-2022 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!