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OK Coalition Helps Vulnerable During Extreme Heat

July 28 -- The Tulsa Weather Coalition, a program of the Community Service Council of Tulsa, Oklahoma, is an initiative designed to prevent death or worsening of health problems among frail elderly and other medically fragile people during the extreme heat of Tulsa's summers. 

Air conditioners are purchased using private donations, at a cost of $100-$150 per unit based on size and availability. Monetary donations of any amount can be sent to: Tulsa Weather Coalition, 16 East 16th Street, Tulsa, OK 74119. Donations of new air conditioners are also welcome. The Tulsa Weather Coalition cannot accept donations of used air conditioners.

Households that meet health and income criteria may receive loaned window air conditioning units as well as home visits, extensive information and education about dealing with life-threatening heat and other conditions.  Most recipients have limited mobility and are low-income. Medical criteria include congestive heart failure, emphysema, renal dialysis treatment, burns, HIV/AIDS, and other serious illnesses. Community Service Council's 2-1-1 Helpline coordinates the work of the Coalition and receives the requests for assistance. 

The Tulsa Weather Coalition’s mission is to reduce loss of life and costly hospitalizations caused by the extreme temperatures and humidity of summer. The Coalition originated in 1980 in response to a heat wave that claimed the lives of 13 Tulsa residents. The program aims to prevent heat related deaths and illnesses through public education and by loaning room size air conditioners to low-income, seriously ill persons. Most air conditioner recipients are over 55 years of age and have serious lung or heart disorders. 

To find out more information about Tulsa Weather Coalition services dial 2-1-1 to be connected to a 2-1-1 Helpline Service Specialist. Callers who meet pre-screening criteria will be referred to Weather Coalition for an assessment of eligibility.

Source: Oklahoma newspapers