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Save Energy, Raise Funds for Local Schools

A school fundraiser aims to have homeowners perform energy upgrades. The same fundraiser generated $18,000 for Alameda County schools last year.

A press release from StopWaste.org:

StopWaste.Org, the local government agency leading Energy Upgrade California in Alameda County, has announced new incentives for its school fundraiser, Energize for the Prize, during the 2012-2013 school year.

Alameda County schools and school organizations can earn up to $50,000 through a new reward structure that gives schools and homeowners more ways to participate and raise money.

Each participating Alameda County school receives $250 for every home that performs an energy upgrade, and a new “upgrade three, get one free” bonus provides $1,000 for every three energy upgrades.

Newark homeowners that perform an energy upgrade can select any participating school in Alameda County to receive the $250 reward. The funds will provide much-needed support to schools, which have suffered deep budget cuts in recent years; between 2007-2008 and 2010-2011 school years, spending per student in California was reduced by $530, according to the California Budget Project.

Details for Energize for the Prize during 2012-2013 are as follows:

  • Energy Upgrade Reward – A participating school or school organization receives $250 for every home it signs up for an energy upgrade between September 2012 and April 2013.
  • Upgrade Three, Get One Free – For every three home upgrades, a school will receive an additional $250 – earning a total of $1,000 for every three upgrades.
  • Outreach Bonuses – Schools can earn additional bonuses through activities such as hosting events, featuring Energize for the Prize at PTA meetings or other school functions and promoting the program online.

There is no limit to the number of upgrades a school can get credit for or the amount of funds a school can raise. Schools and school organizations can use the money they earn in any way they choose.

The contest is open to all K-12 public and private schools in Alameda County, as well as school-related 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations such as PTAs and education foundations.

This is the second year Energize for the Prize is supporting local schools. During the 2011-2012 school year, Alameda County schools raised $18,000 through Energize for the Prize, with the top-earning school receiving $5,700.

“Energize for the Prize is a real win-win in which residents help local schools raise thousands of dollars, while earning rebates for making their homes more energy-efficient,” said Wendy Sommer, principal program manager at StopWaste.Org. “Our goals this year are to provide schools with new ways to earn money, and to increase school and homeowner participation in order to educate more residents about the benefits of saving energy.”

An energy upgrade can increase a home’s efficiency by 10 to 40 percent through basic improvements such as attic insulation and duct sealing, or more advanced improvements like installing an energy-efficient furnace or double‐paned windows.

Rebates of up to $4,000 are available through Energy Upgrade California to help homeowners pay for these improvements. By working with an Energy Upgrade California Participating Contractor, homeowners can ensure that they receive all of the rebates for which they qualify and that their local school obtains proper credit for their participation through Energize for the Prize. Participating Contractors can be found online at EnergyUpgradeCA.org.

Schools and school organizations can learn more about how to participate in Energize for the Prize by contacting an Energize for the Prize Outreach Coordinator at (510) 891-6528 or visiting EnergizeForThePrize.org.

About Energy Upgrade California

Energy Upgrade California is a statewide program that offers rebates and incentives to help homeowners save money on energy efficiency upgrades to their homes. Funding for Energy Upgrade California comes from multiple sources, including federal stimulus funds (American Reinvestment and Recovery Act), the U.S. Department of Energy Better Buildings Program and the California Energy Commission. In the Bay Area, Energy Upgrade California is led by an alliance of the Association of Bay Area Governments, county and city agencies and PG&E.

About StopWaste.Org

StopWaste.Org is the Alameda County Waste Management Authority and the Alameda County Source Reduction and Recycling Board operating as one public agency. StopWaste.Org’s mission is to achieve the most environmentally sound solid waste management and resource conservation program for the people of Alameda County. The agency offers many programs in the areas of public education, green building, recycled product procurement, waste reduction, and market development.

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