Living in Michigan this time of year can bring a mixed bag of emotions. The smells of holiday meals, connecting with friends and family … and for some, the stress of figuring out how they are going to pay their utility bills to keep their home safe, warm and comfortable.
One such person is Holly Teaburry, a single mother of two children. Teaburry lives in Southeast Michigan and has owned her home for the past six years. She was injured on the job causing several broken bones in her neck and back. She continued to work until the pain was so unbearable that she had to apply for disability. Numerous doctor’s visits and six surgeries later, and she’s still not done. Out of work and on a significantly reduced income, Teaburry had many bills that were falling behind, including her utilities, which were disconnected.
Thanks to the customer assistance efforts of DTE Energy and The Heat and Warmth Fund (THAW), Ms. Teaburrry was able to get on a payment plan and have her utilities restored. They also helped her apply for assistance from other agencies that would help ease some of the burden while she was out of work and trying to keep food on the table for her children while facing climbing medical bills.
This is just one of thousands of families DTE and THAW have been able to assist since 1985. On November 16, THAW and DTE, along with media partner WDIV Channel 4 in Detroit, will be hosting the Gift of Warmth telethon hosted by “Help Me Hank” consumer reporter Hank Winchester. Donations received during the event will allow THAW to help families stay healthy, safe and warm during the cold winter months. A portion of the funds donated will be matched by DTE Energy. Please call 313.298.WDIV (9348) to pledge your gift.