Over the past year, Direct Energy and the Ohio Alliance of Boys & Girls Clubs have joined hands to help thousands of Ohio youth prepare for career success. The organizations provided updates on their partnership, as well as a few new announcements, on February 26th, 2014 at the Ohio Statehouse before an audience of legislators and Boys & Girls Clubs members and alumnus.
In 2013, Direct Energy became the Boys & Girls Clubs’ first statewide corporate sponsor when they announced their two-year partnership and $100,000 donation to the Clubs’ Power Hour, an after-school academic support program in seven locations across Ohio: Greater Cincinnati, Greater Cleveland, Columbus, Dayton, Toledo, the Western Reserve (Akron) and Youngstown. Since the announcement of their partnership, more than 5,000 youth have participated in the Power Hour program, a critical part of Boys & Girls Clubs’ Academic Success Strategy. In addition, Direct Energy employees completed various volunteer projects at all funded sites, with associates in Columbus making their volunteering a weekly event.
“Direct Energy’s gift supports Boys & Girls Clubs’ pillar of Academic Success by providing funding for the Power Hour program and support for Ohio’s youth with guided homework help and academic enrichment,” said Rebecca Asmo, executive director for Boys and Girls Clubs of Columbus. “All of this is a critical part of Boys & Girls Clubs’ goal to ensure that all youth are on track to graduate from high school on time with a plan for the future that includes college, a 21st Century Career or military service.”
Direct Energy also presented a $2,500 grant to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Columbus as part of its Reduce Your Use For Good grant program. Through the Reduce Your Use For Good grant program, Direct Energy is offering nonprofits up to $100,000 to implement energy-saving changes to their operations, and awards grants in $2,500 increments. To apply for the grant, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Columbus submitted a short video showcasing their facility and their mission and were chosen for the $2,500 by a panel of judges from Direct Energy. The grant will be used for energy efficient upgrades in the Clubs’ facilities and is another way for Direct Energy to help the Clubs’ focus more on helping at-risk youth and less on its energy bills.
Also participating in the announcement were: Randy Randolph, President of the Ohio Alliance of Boys & Girls Clubs; Dr. Damon Williams, Senior Vice President of Program, Training & Youth Development Services for the Boys & Girls Clubs of America; Jalese Stone, Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Cincinnati 2013 Youth of the Year and various Boys & Girls Clubs Members. Special award recipients included State Senator Scott Oelslager for “Legislator of the Year,” Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine for “Supporter of the Year,” and George Arnold for “Ohio Alliance Board Volunteer of the Year.”
This post was written by Julie Hendry, External Relations Specialist for Direct Energy in Pittsburgh, PA.