Several charity organizations, non-profits, and churches combine resources to provide free fans and air conditioners to members of the Hamilton County community who are considered at risk. Some limited financial assistance may be offered too. The program relies heavily on donations, volunteers and fund raising from the community. Unfortunately the number of fan units is very limited and only a fraction of people may receive help.
Most of the assistance is offered as part of the Summer Cooling Program. It is often referred to as “Beat the Heat” as well. It will usually take place every year and it ramps up when summer temperatures and/or humidity starts to climb.
The Cincinnati-Hamilton County Community Action Agency is one of the leading non-profit organizations. They work closely with other groups such as the St. Vincent de Paul, WCPO, Huntington Bank, Stor-All, Coney Island and Tedia Company. Many other local businesses and people from the community may assist too. Donate as well if you can.
The Summer Fan and Air Conditioner Drive that takes place can help someone provide an elderly or sick neighbor with relief from the summer heat. You can donate cash to the organizations. As little as $15 will provide a fan and $100 will provide an air conditioner for a family. You can also donate a new or gently used fan or air conditioner at any Tedia Company, St. Vincent de Paul Outreach Center or Thrift Store, Stor-All Self Storage locations or at Coney Island where you will receive a free all-day rides pass. The free fan program was created to provide relief for senior citizens and for those suffering from heat-related health problems.
Additional financial assistance may be offered too. Those very low income families that are struggling to keep up with paying their summer energy and air conditioning bills may apply for financial assistance through the community action agencies Summer Cooling Program (SCP). In addition to the cash grants, a limited number of free fans and air conditioners will also be available for eligible families at no cost as indicated above.
Due to the weak economy, and due to rising energy costs, there is an even greater need for the assistance program this summer. These programs, and other resources, may be able to help those who are most vulnerable to the extreme summer heat in Ohio. The SCP cooling program is a part of the federal government's Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP). This is federally-funded and it is administered across the state by the Ohio Department of Development.
A number of conditions need to be met. To be eligible for assistance, families that are applying will need to live in Hamilton County Ohio and they need to have a very low income level. In addition, the household needs to have a member who is sixty years of age or older. Or the program can help those with documentation of medical necessity from a doctor. So even if the household member who is under the age of 60 may qualify, if they have a medical condition.
Call to make an appointment or to see if walk ins are accepted. The homebound and elderly persons from Cincinnati may be eligible for a home visit. They can get help in completing an application or to have an AC unit delivered and installed in their home.
Call the Cincinnati-Hamilton County Community Action Agency at 569-1850 for information on fans, air conditioners, or other financial assistance. The non-profit has extensive information on other resources as well.
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