(Harrisburg, PA) – Tri County Community Action, in collaboration with Department of Human Services (DHS) Secretary Dr. Val Arkoosh and representatives of the Pennsylvania Utilities Commission, convened on Wednesday to kickstart the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) season.
LIHEAP, overseen by DHS, is a federally funded initiative offering direct grants to heating providers for low-income households. Grants range from a minimum grant of $300 to a maximum of $1000. Additionally, crisis grants are available for those facing service termination or possessing less than two weeks’ worth of deliverable fuel, such as fuel oil, propane, coal, or wood.
In tandem with LIHEAP, Tri County Community Action administers the Senior Heating Assistance program on behalf of Cumberland County Aging and Community Services. This program extends beyond LIHEAP’s income limits. Single older adults may have a household income of up to $2,925, while couples can have an income up to $3,325 per month. Eligibility is exclusive to older adults residing in Cumberland County, and recipients cannot be on the Community Health Choices Waiver program.
CEO of Tri County Community Action, Jen Wintermyer, emphasized, “We understand that many individuals in our region will face challenges in meeting their heating expenses. In addition to LIHEAP and the Senior Heating Program, we’ve partnered with First Commonwealth Bank’s Share the Warmth campaign.” Through Share the Warmth, First Commonwealth will match donations, dollar-for-dollar, up to cumulative total of $100,000, contributed to Tri County Community Action.
Elizabeth Saraceno, AVP and Community Engagement Manager at First Commonwealth Bank, expressed gratitude for the vital work carried out by community action agencies. She stated, “We know our neighbors continue to face financial challenges. Please join us in supporting them. Together, we can make a difference.”
Residents of Pennsylvanian can apply for LIHEAP and other public assistance programs online at www.compass.state.pa.us or by phone at 1-866-550-4355.
To apply for the Senior Heating Assistance program, which serves older adults living in Cumberland County, individuals can reach out to Tri County Community Action at 717-232-9757, extension 203.
Wintermyer urged, “We understand that budgets may be tight this year, but even modest contributions can have a substantial impact, especially in November when donations can be matched. I encourage everyone to donate if they are able, as it could mean the difference between keeping a family warm and secure, or facing homelessness, or worse, this winter.” Donations can be made securely only through either through either First Commonwealth’s website at www.fcbanking.com/timetogive or Tri County’s website at www.cactricounty.org/sharewarmth.html.