DETROIT, Dec. 1, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- As the days get shorter and the nights get colder, many Detroiters are wondering how they are going to manage their energy bills. In response, DTE Energy – in partnership with The Heat and Warmth Fund (THAW) – is hosting a "Weekend of Giving," December 10 – 13, to raise $1 million for local residents who are struggling to pay their utility bills.
"Detroiters have always demonstrated a generosity beyond compare when it comes to helping others," said Joyce Hayes Giles, DTE Energy's senior vice president of customer service. "We know they will step forward and join DTE Energy and THAW in our efforts to help residents stay safe and warm this winter."
The "Weekend of Giving" begins Friday, December 10, with THAW's annual "Night of Warm Hearts" fundraising event at the Westin Book Cadillac Hotel in downtown Detroit. City Council President Charles Pugh will host the event, which includes a VIP reception, silent auction, strolling dinner, special award presentations, dancing and entertainment by Modern Tribe featuring Charles and Gwen Scales.
The next evening, Saturday, December 11, will be "Hallelujah for Heat," an inspirational, fundraising gospel concert featuring contemporary vocalist Deitrick Haddon and the Voices of Unity. Other concert highlights will include special guest Tramaine Hawkins, a two-time Grammy Award winner and well-known gospel artist; Detroit's own Charles Martin; and the DSA Choir, a Detroit Public School choir made up of students from the Detroit School of the Fine and Performing Arts. The 3,000-seat Second Ebenezer Baptist Church located on Dequindre in Detroit is the spectacular venue for "Hallelujah for Heat."
The weekend concludes on Monday, December 13, with DTE Energy's Customer Assistance Day at Cobo Hall. Every dollar raised during the weekend will be distributed to customers who are struggling to pay their energy bills and maintain their service. Human services, wellness, and credit and housing agencies will join DTE Energy and THAW in providing much needed assistance. Qualified low income customers are urged to pre-register by phoning (877) 245-7084 by December 3.
"We know it's going to be a tough winter for Michigan's low-income households. As the economy has declined, the number of families and individuals in crisis has risen dramatically," said Hayes Giles. "Our work will not end with the 'Weekend of Giving.' DTE Energy and THAW will continue to work with the federal and state government, and other community and social service agencies, to help those in need."
For more information about the "Weekend of Giving" events, go to www.dteenergy.com/giving.
SOURCE DTE Energy