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Since the beginning of COVID-19, Blue Ridge Energy made the decision to suspend disconnects, waive late fees and offer special payment plans to assist our members and customers during this difficult time. While the decision had already been made to extend these special circumstances until August, Gov. Cooper issued a new Executive Order 142 on May 30 outlining the same timeline. We encourage everyone (including Flexpay members) to continue paying your energy bill to avoid a large balance at the end of this crisis. Call us at 1-800-451-5474 to set up a special payment plan.
Community Helping Agencies Receive Foundation Grants in Caldwell County
Caldwell County citizens will benefit from grants worth $30,615 awarded recently to local helping agencies from the Blue Ridge Energy Members Foundation for the most recent grant cycle. Since its inception, the Foundation has awarded more than $1.1 million in community grants and more than $3.3 million in total assistance for helping members and families stay warm in the winter with heating bill assistance.
The grants are examples of why the cooperative established the Members Foundation in 2007 to support the work of community organizations providing services that improve the quality of life for the cooperative’s members. Projects in the areas of health, wellness, education, youth, and economic and community development are the Foundation’s priorities for support.
A grand total of $114,315 was awarded in grants to 20 different organizations across the Blue Ridge service area. Local Caldwell County agencies receiving grant awards include:
- Caldwell County Lions Activities Association, $500 to help provide 10 free eye clinics to low income individuals in Caldwell County;
- Caldwell Opportunities Inc., $6,870 to provide handicap equipment upgrades for people with accessibility concerns;
- Caldwell Senior Center, $5,000 to support ongoing Medicare counseling and enrollments;
- Chapel of Rest Preservation Society, $2,890 for an alarm system;
- Communities in Schools, $1,855 to fund Chromebooks for students;
- Helping Hands Clinic, $3,000 to help fund a pilot project for low income individuals in Caldwell County;
- Koinonia Inc., $5,000 for mini-split HVAC units;
- Teacher Treasures, $500 to provide ongoing free school supplies for educators;
- The Caldwell Halfway House, $5,000 to help fund ongoing interior renovations.
During 2018, the Foundation also provided crisis funding assistance to more than 1,200 Blue Ridge Energy members in need of emergency help to pay their electric bills. While crisis assistance is funded by the Foundation, local helping agencies evaluate needs and determine who qualifies for assistance.
Funding for Foundation grants and crisis assistance comes from members participating in Blue Ridge Energy’s Operation Round Up® and Operation Round Up Plus® programs as well as an annual contribution from the profits of Blue Ridge Energy, LLC, the cooperative’s heating fuels subsidiary. Over 28,000 members are either rounding up their monthly electric bill with Operation Round Up or adding a dollar or more with Operation Round Up Plus.
Anyone with questions about the Foundation, or agencies interested in applying for grants, may contact Grey Scheer, director of community relations, at email@example.com.
The electric cooperative serves some 76,000 members in Caldwell, Watauga, Ashe, and Alleghany counties as well as parts of Avery, Alexander and Wilkes counties. Learn more at www.BlueRidgeEnergy.com