|Calgary, Alta. - During these difficult economic times, agencies are reporting an increasing number of Albertans experiencing challenges in affording the basic necessities to keep their homes functioning. That is why ENMAX Corporation is pleased to announce a $400,000 commitment to key Edmonton and Calgary agencies who assist vulnerable Albertans as they struggle to manage their energy needs.
ENMAX is providing $100,000 to Edmonton's Bissell Centre over a two-year period to help run its Community Bridge program, a rapid response intervention to bridge clients through a cash crisis and avoid eviction. ENMAX is also renewing its commitment to Calgary's Distress Centre and the Aspen Family and Community Network by providing each agency with $150,000 over a three-year period to fund their Basic Needs and Winter Breather/Community Connect programming respectively.
"In our Customer Care Centre, we hear from vulnerable Albertans who are under considerable financial strain and challenged to make their payments," said Gianna Manes, ENMAX President and CEO. "Through our connection to these agencies and support for their crisis programming, we strive to alleviate the situation by directing people to where they can get the help they need."
"This multi-year commitment will help ensure that the most vulnerable are given the resources to assist with utilities, rent, food, transportation, prescriptions, and more, to help them eventually reach a level of financial stability," said Joan Roy, Executive Director, Distress Centre. "In 2015 we saw a 59 per cent increase in the number of individuals and families seeking support, and we anticipate that these numbers will continue to climb in 2016. We are very grateful for ENMAX's continued support, especially when the community is facing difficult times."
"The reality is that it costs considerably less overall to keep someone housed in a warm, safe home than it does to get someone off the streets," said Shirley Purves, CEO, Aspen Family & Community Network. "Often, the threat of utility disconnection for families can stand in the way of their capacity to make decisions that affect future stability and well-being. Our relationship with ENMAX and our collective focus in combatting energy poverty elevates the work we're already doing in the community."
"With the current economic climate, corporations have been cutting back their spending, so the funding ENMAX is providing truly comes at a crucial time," said Gary St. Amand, Bissell Centre CEO.
ENMAX Corporation, through its subsidiaries, makes, moves and sells electricity to residential, small business and large commercial customers and is headquartered in Calgary, Alberta, with offices in Edmonton. ENMAX Power Corporation owns and operates transmission and distribution infrastructure in Calgary and ENMAX Energy Corporation owns diverse electricity generation facilities throughout the province. Since 2007, ENMAX has been named one of Alberta's Top Employers. ENMAX Energy is currently the retailer of choice for both The City of Calgary and The City of Edmonton.