HELP Launch News Release


July 14, 2016

SPONSOR ENERGY launches HELP to get people back on their feet!

Calgary, Alberta – Home energy services are crucial to individual and family well-being. Yet – over 1 million Canadian households spend more than 10% of their income on home energy. This means that many families are forced to choose between using power/heat, buying groceries and paying rent. Having to make this difficult choice increases the risk of having your power cut off, poor family health and the potential loss of your home. That is why Sponsor Energy launched a program that can HELP to prevent energy poverty.

HELP (Home Energy Low-income Plan) is Alberta’s FIRST and ONLY non-government subsidized electricity and natural gas plan for low income residents.

“HELP is a unique social innovation model in the private sector that offers vulnerable Albertans our lowest energy rates and administration fees available. Thanks to generous donors willing to support this program, Sponsor is also able to guarantee the security deposit for each household, consequently no deposit is required from eligible clients,“ says Sponsor Energy CEO Carolyn Martin.

“The harsh reality is, if you are a low income household, you may be forced to pay the regulated rate option (RRO) or high fixed rates for electricity and natural gas,” says Rhonda Kohnen, Director of Programs, Sponsor Energy. “On top of that, some energy providers charge excessive deposits, late payment charges and re-activation fees, after having reduced or cut-off services entirely when an account is deemed high risk or in arrears. As a result, vulnerable families often pay disproportionately more for home energy than the average household. Not only is this unfair, it is simply wrong!”

Based on the success of the 2015 pilot project with the YWCA of Calgary, Sponsor Energy has expanded the program and is now working with over a dozen referral agencies.

“Managing bills can be a challenge for low income people including the women in our community housing program. Sponsor’s program has been thoughtfully designed to reduce stress and enable people to have a reduced rate,” says YWCA of Calgary CEO Sue Tomney. “For those living in poverty, every bit helps!”

If you would like to learn more about a genuine capacity-building program designed to support low-income Albertans who may be struggling to get back on their feet, please join Sponsor Energy and other socially conscious Albertans at our HELP launch: Noon, July 14, 2016 at the south end of the Jaipur Bridge in Calgary (between the Eau Claire YMCA and Prince’s Island on the Bow River Pathway)

About Sponsor Energy

Sponsor Energy is a socially conscious energy broker that allows customers to “use their power for good” by turning a grudge purchase into a benefit for the community. For every kWh of power or GJ of natural gas used by our residential and business customers, Sponsor Energy donates 50% of its profits to the community partner chosen by that customer, at no additional cost. For HELP clients, Sponsor Energy offers the same great rates and fair terms for both electricity and natural gas, but instead of giving 50% of our profit to charity, it goes back to the client in savings.

For more information, please visit www.sponsorenergy.com

Carolyn Martin                                                                         Rhonda Kohnen

CEO, Sponsor Energy                                                              Director of Programs, Sponsor Energy

Cell: 403-923-2404                                                                 Cell: 403.471.7367

E-mail: cmartin@sponsorenergy.com                                 E-mail: rkohnen@sponsorenergy.com