HIGH POINT, NC - If you're nervous about opening your electric bill during the hot summer months - you're not alone. Many people can't afford to run their air conditioning because it's just too expensive. The Salvation Army of High Point sees the need - and they're here to help.
As the temperatures increase, so does the cost of cooling down a home. Duke Energy even lets people know on their online accounts that the weather is increasing their bills. Some bills are rising by a few bucks- other increases are more significant.
“We have definitely seen an increase in the utility bills, roughly 100 dollars or more,” said Antoine Dalton, with the Salvation Army of High Point.
The organization opened a new office space at 301 West Green Dr., allowing them to expand their programs. One such program is C.I.P. or Crisis Intervention Prevention. The program allows them to help people pay their past due electric bills with government funding.
“So far, in the past three weeks, we’ve seen over 1,300 clients which is three times more than this time last year,” said Dalton.
The amount is different for each household but with a past due bill, proof of income, ID and a social security card, people in need can get the relief from the high electric costs and the heat.
Dalton explained the Salvation Army gets the funding at the beginning of each fiscal year and the funds must last until the following year. Depending on the amount each household receives through different programs will determine the amount they receive through C.I.P.
“There is a cut-off for people but it guarantees anyone in a crisis will be able to get assistance, as long as the funding is available,” said Dalton.
The Salvation Army will look at each person’s situation and determine if they met the criteria of a crisis. The organization serves all of Guilford County. Dalton said they estimate helping close to 13,000 people through C.I.P and a similar program to help people in need during the winter months.