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As part of its “Share the Warmth“ holiday campaign, Indiana-based First Commonwealth Bank has made a $100,000 donation to Dollar Energy Fund, which assists those who are unable to pay their utility bills this upcoming winter season.

With dollar-for-dollar matching support from partner energy companies, the $200,000 will assist more than 550 families in the bank’s footprint in Ohio and Pennsylvania.

Founded in 1983 in western Pennsylvania by a coalition of concerned community and business leaders, Dollar Energy Fund has grown to become the largest hardship fund in Pennsylvania and one of the largest in the country. Now operating in 14 states, the fund administers hardship programs for customers of more than 40 utility companies and partners with over 450 community-based organizations.

These organizations handle application intake for programs while also connecting those in need with other forms of assistance. Dollar Energy Fund began providing hardship services in Ohio in 2009. With additional financial support from utility companies to cover administrative fees, 100 percent of all donations are used to provide utility assistance grants to limited-income households.

“We are extremely grateful for the significant contribution First Commonwealth Bank has made towards our efforts to ensure local families maintain safe utility services,” said Chad Quinn, Dollar Energy Fund CEO, in a news release. “This year has been especially difficult for many and the cost of heat-related utilities during the upcoming winter months adds an extra financial burden for those who are already struggling. But, thanks to First Commonwealth’s generosity, more than 550 additional households will receive assistance through our programs. We look forward to helping our neighbors in need with their support.”

“With the economic struggles families are facing this year, we know our communities’ nonprofit organizations and human service agencies are also challenged to do more with less,“ said First Commonwealth CEO Mike Price. “Our goal is to assist those struggling to make ends meet, and partnering with Dollar Energy Fund allows us to directly impact residents across our footprint in Pennsylvania and Ohio.”