The new programs are the first in the state to help low-to-moderate income households struggling to pay energy bills and deal with food insecurity
National Grid kicks off its annual giving season by donating $6 million to further support New York customers struggling to make ends meet this winter. The funds will be used to launch new energy bill assistance and emergency food assistance programs for low- to middle-income customers, and to increase the company’s contributions to its Caring and Sharing and District Heating Fund programs. The contribution is expected to benefit more than 31,500 New York households, or nearly 100,000 people, and is in addition to National Grid’s annual community and philanthropic support.
National Grid is the first energy company in New York to offer targeted assistance programs for low-to-moderate income customers. The new programs—the Hope & Warmth Energy Fund and Hunger Fighting Hearts emergency food assistance – will help families who are experiencing financial hardship but are just missing out on qualifying for the federally funded home energy assistance program. These are households living on the edge of financial insecurity with an income above the federal poverty line, but below the basic cost of living.
“We know that higher energy supply prices this winter will add to the financial burden for our customers who are struggling with increased costs at the grocery store, at the gas pump and in virtually every aspect of their lives.” , said Rudy Wynter, New York of National Grid. President. “As we enter the holiday season, now is the time for us to provide additional customer support beyond what we currently offer. We are committed to supporting our customers in need by helping them stay warm and safe this winter.
The Hope & Warmth Energy Fund and Hunger Fighting Hearts programs will open on December 15 and end when funding runs out. Caring and Sharing and District Heating Fund grants are offered annually beginning in February. All programs will be administered by HeartShare Human Services of New York.
“We are delighted to continue and expand our longstanding partnership with National Grid. This is the epitome of a company that cares about our fellow New Yorkers in need across the state,” said William Guarinello, President and CEO, HeartShare Human Services.
“These new programs alleviate the stress caused by energy and food insecurity for thousands of moderate-income families, otherwise ineligible for any assistance, who may be facing difficult choices in their lives,” said Tanya Jones, Director Principal of Energy Assistance & Community Development, HeartShare Human Services.
Hope & Warmth Energy Fund Eligibility
The Hope & Warmth Energy Fund will provide emergency financial assistance to vulnerable National Grid customers who have an income above the HEAP eligibility criteria and are struggling to pay their heating-related energy bills. Eligible customers will receive a $200 subsidy during the winter heating season. To be eligible, a candidate to have to:
Eligibility for Hearts Fighting Hunger
Hunger Fighting Hearts is offering one-time emergency food assistance in the form of a $150 grocery/food stamp gift card to eligible National Grid New York customers with an overdue account and a vulnerable household member. Customers who receive the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, are not eligible for this program. To qualify Hunger Fighting Heartscandidates to have to:
Care & Share and District Heating Fund Eligibility
Caring and Sharing provides emergency financial assistance to income-eligible individuals and families who are struggling to pay their heating-related energy bills in the National Grid’s Upstate New York service area. The District Heating Fund provides emergency financial assistance to income-eligible individuals and families who are having difficulty paying their heating-related energy bills in the National Grid New York City Subway service area.
Programs open in February and end when funds are exhausted. Eligible customers receive a $200 subsidy per season. To qualify, candidates to have to:
- Have an active National Grid account in their name.
- Have a household income that meets the Home Energy Assistance Program guidelines.
- Have exhausted all HEAP support available at the time of the request.
For more information about these programs, including how to apply, visit: HeartShare Human Services of New York | Energy aid.
More solutions available through National Grid Winter Savings Initiative for Customers
Since early September, National Grid has been actively promoting bill management programs and solutions to ensure customers have time to take advantage of all the services and tools available that can help them save money on utility bills. energy. Global conflicts, inflationary pressures and strong demand are expected to push energy prices to record highs this winter. National Grid purchases energy on behalf of its customers on the wholesale market and passes on these costs without mark-up or profit; customers pay what National Grid pays for that energy.
Customers having difficulty paying their energy bills are encouraged to contact National Grid as soon as possible. Company resources include flexible payment programs; extensive energy efficiency programs and incentives for homes and businesses; and inexpensive/free invoice management solutions. Visit the National Grid’s Winter Customer Savings Initiative website to find out more.
In addition, there are several assistance programs and services for income-eligible clients:
- Unique New York State Electricity and Gas Bill Relief Credit Programwhich eliminates unpaid utility bills accumulated until May 1, 2022. Customers can benefit from the arrears relief program until December 31, 2022.
- The federal Home Energy Assistance Program, which provides eligible customers with financial assistance to help pay their home heating bills. These grants do not need to be repaid. The HEAP program opened November 1 and will remain available through March 2023. For more information about HEAP, contact your county’s Department of Social Services.
- National Grid Energy Accessibility Programwhich provides automatic monthly credits on gas and electric bills to customers who qualify for the HEAP program or to customers who participate in other eligible programs.
- NYSERDA EmPower New York Free Weather Protection Programunder which a participating contractor will conduct a free home energy assessment to determine if a home would benefit from free energy upgrades such as high efficiency lighting, attic and wall insulation, replacement of old ones inefficient fridges and freezers and water-saving shower heads.
- National Grid Consumer Advocates, who work directly with customers to help them manage their energy bills. Advocates specialize in assisting vulnerable and income-eligible customers with available programs and services offered by National Grid and local partner agencies. They can be reached at 1-800-642-4272 or ConsumerAdvocatesUNY@nationalgrid.com.
Annual Season of National Grid Giving Initiatives
Start the Hope & Warmth Energy Fund and Hunger Fighting Heartsand increased contributions to Caring and Sharing and the District Heating Fund, are among the many ways National Grid and its employees give back to customers and communities during the holidays. Other giving season initiatives include donating food, clothing and personal hygiene items to local shelters; serve those in need at food banks, soup kitchens, faith-based organizations, and senior centers; distribute Thanksgiving meals; holiday decorating at area non-profit organizations, and much more.
National Grid’s giving season is part of Project C, the company’s commitment to generating positive impact in the communities and neighborhoods of New York where customers and employees live, work and play. Project C is funded by National Grid shareholders.
National Grid’s $6 million donation to New York is funded by the company’s shareholders. This is part of $17 million in philanthropic funding National Grid pledged in October to help customers and communities in New York and Massachusetts meet their needs during this financially challenging time.
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