Enrichment Services Program offering utility bill assistance

Published: Mar. 9, 2012 at 11:43 PM EST|Updated: Mar. 10, 2012 at 2:02 AM EST
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COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - Enrichment Services Program, Inc is gearing up for its walk-in energy assistance event Saturday. The program is for people looking for help paying their utility bills.

If this year is anything like previous years, the people over at the enrichment services program are expecting big crowds Saturday morning.

"Individuals would line up the night before and very early in the morning," says Enrichment Services Program President Belva Dorsey. "There's a great need in our community for energy assistance."

This year, they have $1.2 million to assist with utility bills. Each person will get either $310 or $350. The program helps about 5,000 people a year, 250 live in Muscogee County.

Last year, some have described the scene as chaotic, with people camping out and rushing to be first in long lines. But, Dorsey says they have made some changes to make the process easier "What we've done this season, individuals have had to call in and try and get an appointment and then they'll go to our site to try to have their application completed."

In previous years Dorsey says there were no opportunities for people to call in throughout the season; making the walk-in days very busy. In addition, this year, there will be no camping out overnight.

"They won't be able to come and park and stay all night. We will have law enforcement, onsite tonight as well as blockades just too kind of detour some of the camping out and everybody can get an opportunity at nine o'clock," Site Manager Traci Winchester said.

They have also placed enough chairs in the school cafeteria for everyone to wait comfortably inside. To make the process run as smoothly as possible, there are a few things you will need to bring for everyone in your household:

  • Proof of income
  • Proof of social security numbers
  • A heating bill for the current or previous month
  • Proof of citizenship
  • If receiving social security benefits, your 20-12 award letter.

Doors open Saturday morning at 9a.m. at the Rosemont Drive location

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