Just in time for its tenth anniversary, Baldwin EMC’s Operation Round Up program has reached a milestone: $3 million in grant distributions.
Over the past decade, these grants have been made possible through the rounding up of Baldwin EMC members’ bills to the next highest dollar amount, with the extra change being used to fund charitable causes. The grants are distributed by the Baldwin Electric Membership Charitable Foundation, run by a board of nine local volunteers.
Operation Round Up was created by an electric cooperative in South Carolina in 1989. Baldwin EMC adopted the program in 2004 and distributed its first grants to local agencies to aid recovery efforts following Hurricane Ivan.
Caren Davis, chairman of the charitable foundation’s board, says the generosity of Baldwin EMC’s members have allowed the program to succeed. “Every dollar we distribute is an investment in the community we all live in,” Davis explains. “That’s a $3 million difference that Baldwin EMC’s members have made. When you look at it that way, it’s quite the impact.”
Operation Round Up grants must meet need in one of six qualifying categories: food, shelter, health care, clothing, education and the environment. Over the past ten years, many local organizations have benefitted from Operation Round Up’s assistance, as well as hundreds of individuals thanks to the program.
More information about Operation Round Up, including how to apply for assistance, is available at www.baldwinemc.com or by calling (251) 989-6247.