Frigid winter temps highlight need for HeatShare energy assistance

Feb 11, 2021

Winter’s brutal temperatures have finally arrived in Minnesota, with many media outlets reporting on The Salvation Army Northern Division’s efforts to keep homeless people warm (watch stories from FOX 9, KARE 11 and KSTP 5).

The unrelenting cold is also creating problems for low-income families. Some are being forced to spend extra money on heating their homes, leaving less money for essentials like food and clothing. Other families are just one unexpected expense away from having their heat shut off. 

Take, for example, this real-life story submitted by a Salvation Army Northern Division caseworker:

A couple came into my office looking for help with their heating bill. The husband was recently in a terrible car accident that left him badly injured and without a left leg. He became unemployed, while his wife receives only a small Social Security benefit each month. With medical bills on top of their regular bills, the couple was in trouble. 

Thankfully, the caseworker was able use a Salvation Army energy assistance program called HeatShare to pay a portion of the couple’s heating bill and get them caught up. 

Since 1982, HeatShare has provided funding for natural gas, electricity, and other resources for low-income seniors, disabled persons, and others with no place left to turn. Eligibility for the program is determined by two factors: need, and available HeatShare funding. Donate now.

HeatShare funds can also be used to pay for propane or fuel oil. These fuels – which must be delivered to households – are not covered by the Minnesota Cold Weather Rule, which can protect people from having their heat shut off.

"As temperatures continue to plummet, the need for energy assistance continues to rise," said Lt. Col. Dan Jennings, leader of The Salvation Army Northern Division. "Donations to HeatShare are needed now and all winter long to ensure that program funding remains adequate."

You can help families stay warm by making a donation to HeatShare. There are three ways to give:

  • Give online.
  • Call 800-SAL-ARMY to make a credit card donation. Designate your gift “HeatShare.”
  • Mail a check marked “HeatShare” to The Salvation Army, 2445 Prior Ave. N., Roseville, MN 55113.

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