Dec. 17, 2012. The Blue Ridge Electric Members Foundation has awarded $15,000 to four local organizations during the fall 2012 grant cycle.
The Blue Ridge Electric Members Foundation awarded grants totaling $84,645 to help 12 different organizations across the Blue Ridge service area. Blue Ridge Electric established the Foundation in 2006 to support the work of community organizations who offer valuable services to the cooperative’s members. Projects in the areas of health and wellness, education and youth, economic and community development, and environment and quality of life are the Foundation’s priorities.
High Country Women’s Fund received a grant for $2,500 to support young teenage mothers enrolled in GED programs and are seeking their diplomas. The funds will be used for childcare services, gas cards, tires, or any obstacle that may interfere with these young mothers’ success in obtaining their GED’s.
Community Care Clinic received a grant for $5,000 to provide health care to the uninsured. The funds will be used to purchase medical supplies for the lab and exam rooms and to purchase over-the-counter medications.
Casting Bread Food Pantry also received a grant for $5,000 to provide a food pantry to families or individuals who meet the income criteria for food assistance.
Eagle Rock Ministries received a grant for 2,500 to provide less fortunate children of the High Country with clothing, school supplies, personal items, books and toys for Christmas. This agency serves multiple counties.
During 2012, The Foundation also provided crisis assistance funding to lend a hand to Blue Ridge Electric members in need of help paying their electric bills. Over 1,000 families have received assistance from Operation Round Up funds. While crisis assistance is funded by the Foundation, local help agencies evaluate needs and determine who qualifies for assistance. Funding for Foundation grants comes from members participating in Blue Ridge Electric’s Operation Round Up and Operation Round Up Plus programs as well as an annual contribution from the profits of Blue Ridge Energies, the cooperative’s heating fuels subsidiary. More than 30,000 members are either rounding up their monthly electric bill with Operation Round Up or adding a dollar or more with Operation Round Up Plus. Grant funding decisions are made by a Foundation Advisory Committee that is comprised of 12 member representatives from the Blue Ridge districts. Non-profit agencies who serve members in Blue Ridge Electric’s service area are eligible to apply for grants.
Anyone with questions about the Foundation, or agencies interested in applying for grants, may contact Grey Scheer, community relations director, at (828) 759-8994 or [email protected].