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For nearly 20 years Mid Michigan Community Action has been providing assistance to families and individuals in the mid-Michigan area who cannot afford to heat their homes or have home heating related emergencies.

Saturday, February, 26, 2011, Mid Michigan Community Action will host its 20th Annual Walk for Warmth. This annual event raises funds to assist families and individuals who are in need of utility assistance or other home heat related emergencies.

“More people are finding themselves out of work and struggling to pay their bills,” said Sharon Wainman, Mid Michigan Community Action’s outreach services director. “Walk for Warmth helps raise money which can be used to assist those who may not qualify for other programs, but still need help.”

With the Michigan unemployment rate at more than 12 percent, and mid-Michigan counties ranging from 8.4 to more than 15 percent unemployment, households requiring assistance have increased in number.

“Even those who manage to cover their heating costs may encounter a household emergency,” Wainman said. “Mid Michigan Community Action can help those who need assistance with unexpected furnace repair.”

Participants in last years’ Walk for Warmth raised nearly $75,000 in Bay, Clare, Gladwin, Mecosta, Midland and Osceola counties. These funds helped 271 households with heating costs and home heating emergencies. Unfortunately, the expenses to keep those in need warm in the cold winter months are expected to increase.

The agency is thrilled to offer online registration this year. Individuals and teams can register online as well as collect donations through the secure server. Pledges can now be collected in person or linked to the walker’s pledge page through Facebook, Twitter and other social networking sites or by e-mail allowing walkers to invite family and friends to donate.

Pledge sheets are still available at the Mid Michigan Community Action county outreach offices for those who still appreciate collecting pledges through face to face communication. The pledge sheet can also be printed from the agency website for convenience.

Mid Michigan Community Action would like to increase community participation and raise community awareness about the many people in our community who go through the winter with little or no heat. People of all ages are encouraged to participate and walk as individuals or teams and raise funds for those in need. All money raised will make a significant impact in the community, as 100 percent of money raised in the community stays in that community.

Walk for Warmth will be held on February 26th, 2011. Visit to register, print pledge sheets, make donations and find Walk locations and times.

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