GAHANNA — The AEP Ohio Neighbor to Neighbor Program is accepting applications for utility assistance grants for the 2019 summer cooling season. Through a partnership between AEP Ohio, an American Electric Power (NYSE: AEP) company, and Dollar Energy Fund, eligible AEP Ohio customers who need help during the summer months can apply for assistance to maintain or restore their electric service.
Dollar Energy Fund’s Hardship Program – one of the largest in the country – helps eligible families facing an immediate utility crisis. The AEP Ohio Neighbor to Neighbor Program supports families in need with a grant applied directly to their AEP Ohio account to prevent disconnection of, or restore, their electric service. Cooling assistance is available once per program year on a first-come, first-served basis. Eligible account holders may apply through August 31, 2019, while funds are available.
This year marks 10 years since AEP Ohio and Dollar Energy Fund launched the Neighbor to Neighbor Program in May 2009. The AEP Ohio program has provided more than $13.5 million in assistance to more than 56,000 customers during this time.
“We’ve made a commitment to the communities we serve to be a good community partner and neighbor,” said Katie Grayem, director of customer experience for AEP Ohio. “Summer heat can contribute to dangerous conditions, especially for the elderly and those with health problems. The Summer Cooling Program is one of many ways we help our customers who may struggle to afford keeping their homes cool during the summer.”
To apply, customers may contact one of the AEP Ohio Neighbor to Neighbor Program’s network of more than 120 Ohio community-based organizations. To qualify, an applicant’s total gross household income must be at or below 200 percent of the Federal Poverty Income Guidelines.
For example, a family of four earning up to $51,500 per year is income-eligible for the program. Households must have made payments to AEP Ohio totaling at least $75 in the last 90 days and owe a minimum of $50 on their AEP Ohio bill. Full eligibility guidelines and application instructions can be found at AEPOhio.com/helpaneighbor.
“For 10 years, Dollar Energy Fund has been proud to support AEP Ohio’s efforts to serve families who find themselves in a temporary financial situation and need help making ends meet,” said Chad Quinn, chief executive officer of Dollar Energy Fund. “The AEP Ohio Neighbor to Neighbor Program has become a very useful resource for thousands of households across Ohio, enabling them to maintain utility service when blindsided by an unexpected expense.”
The AEP Ohio Neighbor to Neighbor Program is funded by public contributions that are matched dollar-for-dollar by AEP Ohio. Utility customers may make a contribution through their monthly AEP Ohio bill. Donations also can be made online at AEPOhio.com/helpaneighbor or by sending a check directly to The AEP Ohio Neighbor to Neighbor Program, Box 42329, Pittsburgh, PA 15203. Every donation to the Neighbor to Neighbor Program is used to assist eligible families residing in Ohio. Every dollar donated to the Neighbor to Neighbor Program will be matched by AEP Ohio. These matching funds and 100 percent of your donation will assist limited-income families residing in Ohio to afford utility service. With AEP Ohio’s generous match, your tax-deductible donation will have twice the impact!
For more information about Dollar Energy Fund and how to apply for the Hardship Program or donate to the organization, visit www.dollarenergy.org.