“We Energies is stepping up in a major league way to help make sure that the resources are there so that some of our institutions will have the ability to help people come in from the cold,” Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett said.
Barrett and others gathered at the Repairers of the Breach warming center on a cold January day to announce a $100,000 donation from We Energies. The money will help warming centers in Milwaukee stay open longer this winter.
“It is always our focus to make sure that everyone is warm during the cold weather, and this donation is an extension of that,” said Phyllis Eckles, low-income coordinator for We Energies.
We Energies worked with the United Way of Greater Milwaukee & Waukesha County and the Milwaukee Continuum of Care to identify the best use of the donation. The funding will help several homeless organizations make ends meet. It will also allow Repairers of the Breach and St. Benedict the Moor through Capuchin Community Services to open their overnight warming rooms an additional 55 nights this winter. In the past, they were only able to open when the temperature dipped below 10 degrees. This winter, they will open as soon as it hits 20 degrees.
“We Energies, our reliable energy company, is how most of us keep our places warm all year long,” said Amy Lindner, president of the United Way of Greater Milwaukee & Waukesha County. “Because of We Energies’ commitment to keeping everyone in our community safe and warm, great places like the Benedict Center and Repairers of the Breach are able to serve people, and frankly, save lives this winter.”
Both St. Ben’s and Repairers of the Breach will now be able to shelter up to 125 adults on a walk-in basis on nights below 20 degrees. The funding will also support Tippecanoe Church; the Benedict Center, which helps women in the sex trade; and the Adullam Family Warming Center, which serves families.