Project SHARE: How a Small Gift Can Make a Big Difference

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, July 20, 2005

We often think of those in need during the cold winter months, particularly over the holidays. We may choose to volunteer our time in a soup kitchen, donate toys to needy children, or give clothing or blankets to homeless shelters.

But there are many Alabamians who need your help during the hot summer months as well. As all of us know who have gone through summer inAlabama, it can get unbearably hot. Thankfully, most of us have air conditioning or fans. But can you imagine what an Alabama summer would be like without the ability to cool down your house or apartment? Yet this is the reality for some of our citizens who cannot always afford to pay their energy bills. For the elderly and the disabled, this could be a life threatening situation.

There is a bright side to this picture, however, because with a small checkmark, you can help your fellow Alabamians who are in need. Every month, when you look at your Alabama Power or Alagasco bill, you may have noticed an empty box which gives you the opportunity to check off an amount to donate to Project SHARE.

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For those who may not be familiar, Project SHARE (which stands for Service to Help Alabamians with Relief on Energy) helps low income, elderly or disabled Alabamians who face financial and/or medical hardships. Alabama Power, in conjunction with the American Red Cross, created Project SHARE in 1982, and this amazing program has helped thousands of Alabamians maintain services in critical times. Alabama Gas Corporation joined the program in 1984.

The program is funded primarily by good-hearted, generous Alabamians like you who make monthly donations through Alabama Power, Alagasco and other participating energy suppliers. And your generosity really adds up; since the beginning of the program, Project SHARE has provided more than $24.7 million to pay the energy bills of over 250,000 qualified households.

The best part is that participating is easy. You can pledge $1, $2, $5 or any other whole-dollar amount you choose each month. The amount you select will be added automatically to your utility bill each month. You can enroll online on Alabama Power’s website, print out a form from Alagasco’s website and mail it in with your next bill, or simply check the box on your next power or gas bill. In addition, your Project SHARE donation is tax deductible.

So, please, don’t wait. I urge everyone who can afford to give as little as $1 per month to check that box today to help our neighbors who are in need. And to those of you who already contribute, I thank you. Your generosity proves that a little help can make a big difference in the lives of your fellow Alabamians.