By CALVIN ADKINS
THE DAILY SOUTHERNER
Limited weatherization help available
By CALVIN ADKINS
The Daily Southerner
Is there's a draft coming through cracks and crevices of your home? Or Is your heating unit in need of dire repair?
If the answer is yes, the Martin County Community Action, Inc. can assist you, if you meet certain criteria.
MCCAI is taking applications for its Residential Energy Efficiency Services Program (REES). The Williamston-based organization serves Edgecombe, Pitt, Martin, Beaufort and Wilson counties. Because the organization operates in such a broad area, Edgecombe has been alloted only 14 slots.
While MCCAI has begun planning for National Weatherization Day on Oct. 30, the organization is preparing to bring awareness to its program.
"Our services have been very rewarding," said Becky Copeland, program director for MCCAI. "We get calls from people saying their energy bill has reduced 30 percent or greater. They used that money to buy necessities such as medicine."
The REES program is designed to improve energy efficiency, household safety and educate the public about maintaining energy efficiency, Copeland said. The goal of the program is to keep residents warm in the winter, cool in the summer and safe all year long.
Some of the items REES will install include weather strips and threshold doors where leaks are detected, insulate attics and hot water heaters, caulk and seal air leaks as well as installed smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. The program does not provide funds for total rehabilitation repairs, Copeland explained.
Environmental issues the program will address includes removing material from the home that could cause health issues. Wet installation or a leaking roof was two examples that the program address.
"Wet insulation and mold could create health issues," Copeland said. "Sometimes people are not aware of that the problems exist inside their homes. We will fix the problem. It will reduce hospital visits and prevent some asthma attacks."
Low income residents are eligible to participate in the program. For more information about eligibility contact MCCAI at 792-7111.
MCCAI is also participating in Heating and Air Replacement Program. This program will replace or repair heating units for low income residents. Only 14 slots have been allotted to Edgecombe County for that program also.
In addition to HARP the REES programs, MCCAI has partnered with Piedmont Gas which will allow additional repairs and services for residents who uses Piedmont service.