Cold Weather, High Utility Bills Threaten Seniors

By: Elder Care Services, Inc. Release
By: Elder Care Services, Inc. Release

January 2011, Tallahassee, FL -

Each month, Elder Care Services receives money from EHEAP (Emergency Home Energy Assistance Program) – this is a federally funded program that provides funds for low income seniors who are in crisis situations. These funds help seniors with utility payments and to provide propane for their gas tanks.

Applications are received on a first come basis and only those whose services are in jeopardy of being turned off or need to be re-instated are considered.

The Area Agency on Aging of North Florida receives approximately $4,400 a month to disburse among their 14 counties. The funds are usually out by the 4th or 5th of each month and this month is no exception. With last month’s record breaking temperature, bills are higher than ever. And for those seniors on a fix income keeping their utilities on becomes quite a challenge. Bills are still expected to be high next month as January continues to show the same low temperatures as December.

Currently, Elder Care Services is receiving an average of 5 calls a day from seniors who can not afford to pay their utility bills or fill up their tanks. In some cases, they are just showing up at our office to plead their case, hoping there are funds available.

ECS has relied on individual and community donations in the past to help assist when the federal funds are no longer available. Requests are expected to increase over the next two months with the record breaking temperatures. Donations will allow us to continue to assist those in need.

Donations can be made by calling ECS at 850-921-5554, visiting our web site at www.ecsbigbend.org or by mailing donations to ECS, 2518 West Tennessee Street, Tallahassee, FL 32304.


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