February 20, 2015—"Move your feet to give others heat." That is the call to action that Consumers Energy of Michigan and over 30 Community Action Agencies across the state are using to get their communities involved in raising funds for vulnerable populations that might otherwise go without heat this winter. The Walk for Warmth event, a 5K run/walk, will take place in several communities across the state during the months of February and March.
Funding and budget woes often make it difficult for local LIHEAPs to help all those who come to them for aid. To help mitigate this problem, Consumers Energy is once again offering to match all funds raised by employees and any participating family and friends in the Walk for Warmth. Consumers Energy was able to donate over $300,000 to 31 Community Action Agencies after the event completed last year.
Michigan, however, is not the only state to hold Walk for Warmth events for energy assistance fundraising. Connecticut is also on that list, along with Nebraska. Connecticut's New Opportunities Community Action Agency also holding its 26th annual Walk for Warmth event this March in Meridian. Similar to Michigan, New Opportunities is holding the event to raise assistance funds for vulnerable members of the community located in its service area of Meriden, Wallingford, Southington, Berlin and Cheshire.
Omaha, Nebraska will be "heating the streets" and "walking for warmth" the first weekend in March with its annual Heat the Streets 5K run and one-mile Walk for Warmth. Funds that are raised will be used to help people in need by assisting with utility bill payments. These funds will be distributed by local nonprofit agencies working with Omaha Public Power District, Metropolitan Utilities District and Black Hills Energy, according to the event's website.
Sources: media reports, Consumers Energy of Michigan, New Opportunities Community Action Agency, Heat the Streets Omaha