Monday, July 1, 2013

Salvation Army helps people stay cool

Home Energy Aid Month raises money to help people pay for utilities

The Salvation Army has many programs that can make a huge impact on people’s lives. One of my favorites is Emergency Financial Assistance (EFA), which helps those who are facing financial challenges pay their utility bills.  We consider this a homeless prevention program.  It’s even got the attention of Mayor Dewey Barlett and Governor Mary Fallin who have declared July Home Energy Aid Month in Tulsa and the State of Oklahoma.

Home Energy Aid Month raises awareness of the program while helping us get more donations to ensure we can help everyone who needs it.  During the summer months, the funds we have to run this program start running low.  Some people have to choose between paying their gas/electric bill or their rent or food.  Each household can only receive assistance one time per year so the assistance does not create dependency, only offers them a hand up. The Salvation Army never pays all of the bill either, the customer must pay some of it.

EFA is funded primarily by donations to Public Service Company of Oklahoma’s Light A Life program, Oklahoma Natural Gas Company’s Share the Warmth program and Oklahoma Gas & Electric Company’s Lend A Hand program. We have several events planned for HEA Month including:

 *Bean Chowder Chowdown – Thursday, July 18th, 11am-1pm - For the second year in a row, the Center of Hope (102 N. Denver) will host the Bean Chowder Chowdown. For $7, people can get a bowl of bean chowder (recipe made famou sby Tulsa Public Schools), plus cornbread and a drink. Cinnamon rolls will also be available for an additional fee. This year, we are encouraging people to order take-out to get more businesses to buy for a group of people.

*PSO & Shock Partnership - July 19th, 21st & 25th – The Shock and PSO will hold various activities and fundraisers throughout these games to bring awareness to PSO’s Light A Life program and  Home Energy Aid Month. PSO is also providing 150 tickets to Boys & Girls Clubs members to the 25th game.

*Westlake Fan Discounts – The three Tulsa Westlake Hardware stores will donate several dozen box fans to The Salvation Army and hopes its customers will do the same. Westlake is offering discounted box fans for $16.99 in their stores for customers to buy and donate to us The promotion will run July 1-14.


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