Wilmington-based Non-Profit Marks Fourth Year for Free Heater Distribution Program
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
(DEC. 1, 2008; WILMINGTON, DE) — For the fourth consecutive year, Warm The Heart, a local non-profit organization, will be helping the less fortunate of the city of Wilmington and New Castle County, DE stay a lot warmer this winter season.
Mark Aitken and Dave Geiger, owners of Horizon Services, Inc. — a plumbing, heating and air conditioning services company headquartered in Wilmington, DE — began this charitable organization in 2005 after seeing first-hand the homes of families and individuals with no heat. Many families lacked financial resources, were down on their luck or had heating equipment that no longer functioned properly. As a result, they had resorted to using unsafe heating alternatives — such as open stoves and dangerous kerosene heaters — to provide relief during the cold winter months.
Aitken and Geiger saw an opportunity to help ease their financial burden and created a program to provide assistance. They reached out for support from other like-minded companies such as Delmarva Power, Lyon & Conklin, Trane Corporation and Valero Energy.
By the end of the 2008-2009 winter season, with the combined efforts of these organizations, Warm The Heart will have installed 51 heating units free of charge to low-income and needy family in Wilmington and New Castle County.
“As we enter the holiday season and as colder winter temperatures will soon be upon us, the employees of Horizon Services and all of our corporate partners believe we have an obligation to do our parts to help our fellow neighbors and assist families in need,” said Aitken. “We’ve been able to touch so many families through this program and we’re looking forward to another successful campaign.”
The City of Wilmington and New Castle County will assist the Warm The Heart organization by establishing application distribution and drop-off points for the duration of the program. Applications and program requirements will be available at more than 20 community center locations throughout Wilmington and New Castle County. The deadline for submitting applications is January 5, 2009, and recipients will be notified by January 30, 2009.
“The City of Wilmington is proud to participate in the Warm The Heart program again this year,” said Mayor James M. Baker. “In light of current economic conditions, it is important now, more than ever, that we all do our part to help our neighbors in need. It is a fact that hundreds of people in our city and county cannot heat their homes adequately in winter, and this program, headed by Mr. Aitken, is having a direct impact on those who need our help.”
Aitken said New Castle County and the City of Wilmington’s community centers have been key drop-off points for applicants for the past three years. “Our continued partnership with the city and county helps Warm the Heart find the right fit for our mission and for that we’re thankful.”
“Having a warm home during the winter months is something many of us take for granted,” said New Castle County Executive Chris Coons. “For some families though, it is a luxury that cannot be afforded. The Warm The Heart program is truly a blessing to those families who have inadequate or broken heating systems.”
Aitken explained that an independent committee will be established this year to review the applicants. This committee, made up of representatives from various non-profit community-based organizations, will review all applications and be responsible for selecting recipients of the new heating systems.
Tax deductible contributions can be made year-round to:
Warm The Heart
c/o Horizon Services Inc.
320 Century Blvd.
Wilmington, DE 19808
Potential corporate sponsors or groups interested in supporting Warm The Heart can call (302) 762-1200 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
About Warm The Heart:
Warm The Heart is a not-for-profit organization that exists as a means to provide replacement furnaces to needy families in New Castle County, DE and the city of Wilmington, DE who are not able to afford them on their own this winter. Founded by the employees of Horizon Services, Inc. in 2005, Warm The Heart was created to deliver necessary relief to less fortunate families who might otherwise ignore the potential life threatening issues of a faulty heating system and ease the pain of increasing utility bills by replacing old and damaged furnaces with new, high-efficiency heaters. To date, Warm The Heart has donated brand new furnaces for 39 of New Castle County’s and Wilmington’s needy families and will purchase and install an additional 12 new furnaces in 2008/2009. Website: http://www.warmtheheart.org.
About Horizon Services:
Horizon Services is the region’s leading plumbing, heating and air conditioning services company, providing repair, maintenance, sales and installation to homeowners and businesses in Delaware (New Castle County, Kent County), Pennsylvania (Delaware County, Chester County, The Main Line) and Maryland (Cecil County). Horizon is headquartered in Wilmington, DE. Website: http://www.horizonservicesinc.com.
Brian P. Cunningham
RT&E Integrated Communications