By Energy Share of Montana
No job. Severe injury. Hospitalization. Worried about where your kids’ next meal is going to come from. Mid-life career change gone bad. Major vehicle breakdown. Laid off suddenly after 25 years with the same company. Elderly couple and one dies.
These situations, any combination thereof, and almost anything you can imagine, are what participants in the Energy Share program have gone or are going through.
Energy Share of Montana is a statewide private nonprofit that helps your neighbors who are facing loss of heat or lights in their home through no fault of their own. The organization helps families by reviewing situations individually to determine appropriate assistance. The nuts and bolts of Energy Share “happens” with the ten Human Resource Development Councils (HRDCs) across the state, and the volunteer Local Energy Share Committees that each HRDC coordinates. Committees across the state vary as dictated by the specific needs of the community. These Committee members donate many hours on behalf of the organizations they represent.
Last year Energy Share helped 174 families in this area and 2,953 across the state. One situation was a family with a single Dad and three children. He used to fight fires for a living but was diagnosed with cancer and last winter had to wait for a critical health procedure. Now his only income is SSI. He always pays something on his utility bill, even if it is just small amounts, but with the severe winter he could not keep up. Neighbors like you help people in situations like this every day. If you or someone you know needs help with their home energy bill, please call Action for Eastern Montana in Glendive at 406-377-3564 or Energy Share at 1-888-779-7589.
Energy Share relies on donations to carry out its primary purpose of helping Montanans who are facing energy emergencies. One hundred percent of private donations are used to help someone in need. For more information on how to apply or how to help, visit www.energysharemt.com or call 1-888-779-7589. You will also see an informational donation envelope or pledge card in your November utility bill or, if you’re a member of an electric cooperative, in the Rural Montana magazine.