For almost 30 years, Barbara Judd has been the neighborhood watch. On any given nice day, you can find the 83-year-old outside her home watching North Carolina Central students.
"Sitting and looking at all the children going to school and people catching the bus. I love it," she said.
Judd is a retired healthcare worker living on a fixed income. This is her third year applying to the low-income energy assistance program.
"When my house gets cold. It's cold. That's a big house. All the heat go upstairs," said Judd. "My money doesn't go that far. By the time I pay the house payment, light bill, gas bill, my little phone bill I won't have anything."
According to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, more than 150,455 households received benefits from the (LIEAP) low-income energy assistance program last year.
- In Wake County, it served 6,660 households.
- In Durham County, it served 2,802 households.
- In Cumberland County, it served 5,870 households.
"The need is greater now than it's been in the past. Even though we're trying to rebound from COVID-19 we still haven't rebounded," said Sherry Rogers with Durham County Social Services.
Tuesday, January 3, 2023, marks the program's start, but eligibility varies depending on your income. You can apply by picking up an application at the Durham County building or by calling (919)560-8192.
"Once they call, make sure they ask about LIEAP and a social worker will call them back," she said.
You must meet certain criteria, which you can find here.
The deadline to apply to this program is March 31st.